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This book is purchased from 

The Schofield Fund 

given in memory of 

William Henry Schofield 

Victoria College, B.A. 1889 

Harvard University, Ph. D. 1895 

Professor of Comparative Literature 

Harvard University, 1906-20. 

Harvard Exchange P rofessor at 

University of Berlin, 1907 

Lecturer at the Sorbonne and 

University of Copenhagen, 1910. 

Harvard Exchange Professor at 

Western Colleges, 1918. 


<6tra Merits. No. xxxvni. 







m&mt 4 

anli of 

Jftrninkas jjis Sone % conqueribe |Ume 



, anir 







[Reprinted 1891, 1S9S.] 



























PARED WITH THE SOWDAN ... ... ... xlix 


BRAS ... Hi 


QUEREDE ROME ... ... 1 





THE exploits of Charles the Great, who by his achievements as 
conqueror and legislator, as reformer of learning and missionary, so 
deeply changed the face of Western Europe, who during a reign of 
nearly half a century maintained, by his armies, the authority of his 
powerful sceptre, from the southern countries of Spain and Italy to 
the more northern regions of Denmark, Poland, and Hungary, must 
have made a profound and unalterable impression in the minds of his 
contemporaries, so that for centuries afterwards they continued to 
live in the memory of the people. Evidence of this high pitch of 
popularity is given by the numerous chansons de geste or romances, 
which celebrate the deeds, or are connected with the name, of the 
great and valiant champion of Christendom. 

It is true that the sublime figure of Charlemagne, who with his 
imaginary twelve peers perpetually warred against all heathenish or 
Saracen people, in the romances of a later period, has been consider- 
ably divested of that nimbus of majestic grandeur, which the com- 
posers of the earlier poems take pains to diffuse around him. 
Whereas, in the latter, the person of the Emperor appears adorned 
with high corporeal, intellectual, and warlike gifts, and possessed of 
all royal qualities ; the former show us the splendour of Royalty 
tarnished and debased, and the power of the feodal vassals enlarged 
to the prejudice of the royal authority. Roland, in speaking of 
Charlemagne, says, in the Chanson de Roland, 1. 376 : 
" Jamais n'iert hum qui encuntre lui vaillet," 

and again the same Roland says of the Emperor, in Guy de Bour- 
goyne, 1. 1061 : 

" Laissomes ce viellart qui tous est assotez." 



This glorification of the great Christian hero took its rise in 
France, but soon spread into the neighbouring countries, and before 
long Charlemagne was celebrated in song by almost all European 
nations. Indeed, there are translations, reproductions, compilations 
of French Charlemagne romances to be met with in Italy, Spain, and 
Portugal, as well as in Scandinavia and Iceland. Even in Hungary 
and Eussia these chansons of the Charlemagne cycle seem to have 
been known. 1 

A full account of almost all Charlemagne romances will be found 
in Gaston Paris's exhaustive work of the Histoire poetigue de 
Charlemagne (Paris, 1865), and in Leon Gautier's Epopees fra?icaises 
(Paris, 1867). 

_0f all the Charlemagne romances, that of Fierabras or Ferumbras 
lias certainly obtained the highest degree of popularity, as is shown 
by the numerous versions and reproductions of this romance, from the 
13th century down to the present daj. 

When the art of printing first became general, the first romance 
that was printed was a prose version of Fierabras ; and when the 
study of medieval metrical romances was revived in this century, the 
Fierabras poem was the first to be re-edited. 2 

The balm of Fierabras especially seems to have been celebrated 
for its immediately curing any wound ; we find it referred to and 
minutely described in Florian's Don Quichotte, I. chap. 10. The 
scene of Fierabras challenging to a combat the twelve peers of France, 
and of his vaunting offer to fight at once with six (or twelve) 
of them, 3 must also have been pretty familiar to French readers, as 
the name of Fierabras is met with in the sense of a simple common 
noun, signifying "a bragging bully or swaggering hector." 4 

Rabelais 5 also alludes to Fierabras, thinking him renowned 
enough as to figure in the pedigree of Pantragruel. 

In 1833, on a tour made through the Pyrenees, M. Jomard wit- 

1 Histoire Poet., p. 133-4. 

2 Gautier, Epopees, ii. 308. 

3 Cf. the French Fierabras, 1. 84; Sir Ferumbras, 1. 102; Sowdone, 
1. 1067. 

4 Thus in Scarron, Gigant, iii. 

5 Pantagruel, ii. chap. 1. 


nessed a kind of historical drama, represented by villagers, in which 
Fierabras and Balan were the principal characters. 1 

That in our own days, the tradition of Fierabras continues to live, 
is evident from the fact, that copies of the Fierabras story, in the 
edition of the Bibliotheque Bleue, stinjcirculate amongst the country 
people of France. 2 There is even an illustrated edition, published in 
1861, the pictures of which have been executed by no less an artist 
than Gustave Dore. And like Oberon, that other mediaeval hero of 
popular celebrity, 3 Fierabras has become the subject of a musical 
composition. There is an Opera Fierabras composed by Franz 
Schubert (words by Joseph Kupelwieser) in 1823, the overture of 
which has been arranged for the piano in 1827, by Carl Czerny. 4 

The different versions and the popularity of the present romance 
in France, Italy, Spain, and Germany, having been treated in the 
Introduction to Sir Ferumbras, we need not repeat it again here. 5 
As to the popularity of the Fierabras romance in the Netherlands, 
the following passage from Hoffmann, Horcn Belyicve (Vratislaviae, 
1830), I. 50, may be quoted here 6 : 

"Quam notae Belgis, sec. xiii. et xiv., variae variarum nationum 
fabulae fuerint, quae ex Gallia septemtrionali, ubi originem ceperunt, 
translatae sunt, panca haec testimonia demonstrabunt : ... .in 
exordio Sidraci : 7 

' Dickent hebbic de gone ghescouden, 
die hem an boeken houden 
daer si clene oerbare in leren, 
also sijn jeesten van heeren, 
van Paerthenopeuse, van Amidase, 
van Troijen ende van Fierabrase, 
ende van menighen boeken, die men mint 
ende daer men litel oerbaren in vint, 

1 See the most interesting account of this piece and its curious manner of 
representation in Histoire Litteraire de la France, xvii. 720-21. 

2 Gautier, Epopees, ii. p. 308 ; and Histoire Poetique, p. 99. 

3 See Huon de Bourdeaux, edd. Guessard and Grandmaison, p. xxxviii. 

4 See G. Nottebohm, Thematisches Verzeichniss dcr im Drucit, e-schiene- 
ncn Werke von Franz Schubert. Wien, 1874. Op. 76. 

5 Of. besides, Histoire Poetique, pp. 97, 143, 155, 214, 251 ; Epopees 
fi'an$aises,\\. pp. 307-9 ; and the Preface of the French edition of Fierabras. 

6 See also Mone, Uebersiekt der niederldmUschen Volksliteratur iiltere" 
Zcit. Tubingen, 1836. p. 56. 

7 Cf. Warton, Hist, of Eng. Poetry, 1824, vol. i. pp. 147-8. 

b 2 


ende dat als leghene es ende mere, 
ende anders en hebben ghene lere, 
danne vechten ende vroweu minnen 
ende lant ende steden winnen ' 

" Nec rarius tanguntur fabulse de Carolo Magno, Speculum His- 
toriale, IV. 1. xxix (cf. Bilderdijk, Verscheidenli, I. D. bl. 161-2) : 

' Carel es menichwaerf beloghen 
in groten boerden ende in hoghen, 
alse boerders doen ende oec dwase, 
diene beloghen van Fierabrase, 
dat nie ghesciede noch en was .... 
die scone walsce valsce poeten, 
die mer rimeu dan si weten, 
belieghen groten Caerle vele 
in sconen worden ende bispele 
van Fierdbrase van Alisandre, 
van Pont Mautrible ende andre, 
dat algader niet en was . . . ."* 

That the Fierdbras romance must have been well known and 
highly popular in England and Scotland, may be gathered from the 
numerous references to this poem in various Middle English works. 

Thus the whole subject of the Flerabras romance is found in the 
following passage, taken from Barbour's Bruce, ed. Skeat, 3, 435 ss., 
where the King is described as relating to his followers : 

" Romanys off worthi Ferambrace, 
That worthily our-commyn was 
Throw the rycht douchty Olywer ; 
And how the duz Peris wer 
Assegyt in till Egrymor, 
Quhar King Lawyne lay thaim befor 
With may thowsandis then I can say, 
And bot elewyn within war thai, 
And a woman ; and wa sa stad, 
That thai na mete thar within had, 
Bot as thai fra thair fayis wan. 
Y heyte, sua contenyt thai thaim than ; 
That thai the tour held manlily, 
Till that Rychard off Normandy, 
Magre his fayis, warnyt the king, 
That wes joyfull off this tithing : 
For he wend, thai had all bene slayne, 
Tharfor he turnyt in hy agayne, 
And wan Mantrybill and passit Flagot ; 
And syne Lawyne and all his flot 
Dispitusly discumfyt he : 
And deliueryt his men all fre, 
And wan the naylis, and the sjter, 
And the croune that Ihesu couth ber ; 


And off the croice a gret party 
He wan throw his chewalry." ' 

In his poem of Ware the Haivlt, Skelton (ed. Dyce, I. 162) cites 
Syr Pherumbras as a great tyrant. He also refers to him in one of 
his poems against Garnesche, whom he addresses with the following 
apostrophe : 

"Ye fowle, fers and felle, as Syr Ferumbras the fifreke." 

The story of the combat between Oliver and Ferumbras is alluded 
to by Lyndsay, in his Historie of ane Nobil and Wail^eand Squyer, 
William Mddrum, ed. Hall, 11. 1313-16 : 

" Roland with Brandwell, his bricht brand, 
Faucht never better, hand for hand, 
Nor Gawin aganis Golibras, 
Nor Olyver with Pharambras" 

The tale of the fortified bridge of Mauntrible seems also to have 
been very well known in England and Scotland. In the Complaint 
of Scotland, ed. Murray, p. 63, we find the Tail of the Brig of the 
Mantrible mentioned among other famous romances. In his lampoon 
on Garnesche, Skelton describes his adversary as being more deformed 
and uglier than 

" Of Mantryble the bryge Malchus 2 the murryon." 

As has already been mentioned, amongst all the Charlemagne 
romances the (originally French) romance of Fierabras is remarkable 
as_being one of the first that was rescued from the dust of libraries ; 
and it is worthy of note, in connection with it, that the first printed 
version was not a French, but a Provencal one, which was published 
not in France, the birth-place of the romance, but in Germany. 

The manuscript of this Prove^al version having been discovered 
by Lachmann in the Library of Prince Ludwig von Oettingen- 

1 It is worthy of notice that the account of the Fierabras romance as 
given by Barbour, may be considered, on the whole, as identical with the sub- 
ject of the French Fierabras or the English Syr Ferumbras, but not with the 
Sorcdan, as there is no mention made of the combat before Rome, nor any 
trace of what makes up the first part of the Soivdan. But the spelling Lawyn 
for Balan agrees with the spelling of the same name in the Sowdan. As to 
the relics mentioned in the passage above, they differ from all other versions. 

3 In the Sowdan the Bridge ward is called Alagolofre ; cf. Index of Names. 


Wallerstein, 1 somewhere about the year 1820, the poem was pub- 
lished in 1829 by Immanuel Bekker. 2 

Raynouard, who drew attention to this edition of the poem in the 
Journal des Savants, March 1831, supposed this Provensal version 
to be the original. 

Soon after Fauriel discovered at Paris two MSS. of the romance 
in French, and a third French MS. was found in London, 3 by Fr. 
Michel, in 1838. 

In 1852 Fauriel gave an account of the poem in the Histoire 
Litteraire de la France, par les religieux benedictins de congregation 

de Saint-Maur continues par des membres de I'lnstitut, vol. 

xxii. p. 196 et scq., where he also investigated the question of the 
originality of the two versions, without arriving at a linal solution ; 
as from the comparison of the French and the Provencal version, no 
conclusion as to the original could be drawn in favour of either of 
the two poems. 4 

As early as 1829 TJhland and Diez had expressed their opinion, 
that in all probability the Prove^al poem was to be looked upon as 
a reproduction of some French source; 5 and in 1839 Edelestand du 
Meril, in France, had pointed out the French poem as the original 
of the Prove^al version ; 6 Guessard in his lectures at the Ecole des 
Chartes, at Paris, had also defended the same opinion; when in 
1860, the editors of the French Fierabras 7 finally and irrefutably 
proved the impossibility of considering the Provei^al poem as 
anything but a translation of a French original. 

1 This MS. consisting of 71 parchment leaves in 4to, with coloured initials 
at the beginning of each rhyme-strophe, had formerly been in the possession 
" Majoris Monasterii congregationis Sancti Mauri," at Paris. Having passed 
through many hands during the French Kevolutiou, it finally came to the 
Library of Wallerstein. 

2 Der Roman von Ferabras, provenzalisch. Berlin, 1829. 
* British Museum, MS. Reg. 15. E. vi. 

4 Cf. also the Preface of the French Fierabras, p. iv. 

5 See Leben nnd Werke der Troubadours, by Friedrich Diez, Zwickau, 
1829, p. 613 note, and Berliner Jahrbiicher fur wissenschaftliche Xritik, 1831. 

6 In a footnote to his Histoire de la Poesie scandinave, p. 183, where he 
says : " Le roman de Ferabras, public a Berlin par M. Bekker, est . . . evi- 
demment traduit du fran9ais, et en a conserve trop de formes et d'expressions 
pour avoir la moindre valeur grammaticale." 

7 Fierabras chanson de geste, edd. Krocber and Servois, in the collection 
of the Ancient Poctes de la France. 


In 1865, Gastoii Paris, in his Poetical History of Charlemagne, 
pointed out that what we have now of the Fierabras romance must 
be looked upon as a very different version from the old original 
Fierabras (or Balan) romance, the former being indeed only a por- 
tion, considerably amplified and in its arrangement modified, of the 
old poem, the first portion of which has -been lost altogether. Gaston 
Paris had been led to this supposition by the rather abrupt opening 
of the Fierabras, which at once introduces the reader in mcdias res, 
and by the numerous passages of the Fierabras, which contain allu- 
sions and references to preceding events; several of which, being 
obscure and inexplicable from the context of the Fierabras itself, 
can only be explained by assuming the existence of an earlier poem. 

The main subject of the old Balan or Fierabras romance may be 
given as follows : " The Saracens having invaded Rome and killed 
the Pope, Charlemagne sends, from France, Guy of Burgundy and 
Richard of Normandy to the rescue of the city, and follows himself 
with his main army. After a fierce combat between Oliver and 
Ferumbras, the city is delivered from the Saracens, and a new Pope 
established." * 

1 For a more detailed analysis, see Histolre Poet., p. 251, and cf. the 
account given of the old Fierabras or Balan romance by Philippe Mousket, 
ed. Reiffenberg, Bruxelles, vol. I. v. 11. 4664 4716, which runs as follows-* 

4664 Puis fu Roume par force prise 

et la gent destruite et ocise 

et li apostoile ocis 

Castiaus-Mireors ars et pris 
4668 et toute la cite bruie. 

li dus Garins et sa mesnie 

entrerent en Castiel-Croisant, 

quar Sarrasin, Turc et Persant 
4672 amenerent trop grant compagne 

et devers Surie et d'Espagne ; 

si furent crestien dolant, 

et manderent tot maintenant 
4676 soucours al bon roi Charlemainne 

ki sa fieste en France demainne, 

et li rois en cele besogne 

lor tramist Guion de Bourgogue, 
4680 ki nouviaus chevaliers estoit 

et des jovenes enfans avoit 

devant ou la couronne prise. 

et soucourureut sans faiutisc 


Of all the events related in the old Dalan romance, there is but 
one which is contained in the Fierabras poem, viz. the combat be- 
tween Oliver and Ferumbras, and even this has been greatly modified 
in consequence of the composer's transferring the scene of action from 
Italy to Spain. All the other events related in the Fierabras, the 
love of Floripas and Guy, the capture of the twelve peers, their 
being besieged in the castle of Agremor, and their deliverance by 
Charlemagne, and the ultimate wedding of Floripas and Guy are 
altogether wanting in the original Fierabras [Balan] romance. 

Therefore Gaston Paris was right in saying that the Fierabras 
poem contained only the second part of the earlier poem, the first 
part of which had not come down to us. 

Now it seemed as though this view, which had been clearly 

4684 lor bon roi en la tiere estrange 

u il n'orent ni lin ni lange. 

en France estoient revenu 

et soujourne et bien p6u, 
4688 mais a eel soucours le tramist 

li rois, ki moult s'entremist, 

et si tramist de Normendie 

Bicart a la ciere bardie, 
4692 si reprirent li Mireour : 

et dus Garins vint a 1'estour, 

ki tint Pavie en quite 

s'ot bien Castil-Croisant garde, 
4G96 et Karles ot sa gent mandee, 

si vinrent de mainte contree, 

quar il lor faisoit tant de biens, 

qu 'a ses amis ne faloit riens. 
4700 si trest vers Rome li bons rois 

et fist as paiens moult d'anois. 

dont se combati Oliviers 

a Fierabras ki tant fu fiers ; 
4704 d'armes 1'outra, si reconquist 

les .ii. barius qu'a Rome prist, 

si les gieta enmi le Toirre 

por 9ou que plus n'en peust bcivre; 
4708 quar c'est bausmes ki f u remes 

dont Ihesu Cris f u embausmes. 

puis furent mort tot li paien 

et mis en Roume crestiien, 
4712 si ot autre apostoile fait 

et Karles s'en revint bait, 

si gratia Dieu et St. Piere, 

que recouvree ot sa kaiere, 
471G soujourner vint dont a Parise . . . 


demonstrated and generally adopted, would have to undergo a 
thorough modification on the discovery of a new Fierabras Manu- 
script in Hanover. Professor Groeber, having been informed of the 
existence of that MS. by Professor Tobler, published from it, in 1873, 
the poem of the Destruction de Home, 1 which in that MS. precedes 
the Fierabras romance. 2 In his Address to the Assembly of German 
Philologists at Leipzig, 8 the same scholar attempted to show that 
this poem represented the first part of the earlier Bdlan romance. 

This supposition, however, can only be accepted with reserve, 
and needs a great modification, as by no means all the references to 
previous events contained in the Fierabras receive explanation in 
the Destruction, although all such previous events must have been 
narrated in the original Balan. Moreover, one of these allusions 
in the Fierabras is in direct contradiction to the contents of the 

Thus 11. 2237 et seq. of the Fierabras:* 

u .i. chevalier de France ai lontans ename : 
Guis a nom de Borgoigne, moult i a bel arme" ; 
Parens est Karlemaine et Reliant 1'adure. 
Des que je fui a Romme, m'a tout mou cuer emble, 
Quant 1'amirans mes peres fist gaster la cite", 
Lncafer de Baudas abati ens ou pre, 
Et lui et le ceval, d'unfort espiel quarre," 

where Floripas declares that she has seen Guy before Rome when 
defeating Lukafer, widely differ from the account given in 11. 1355 
et seq. of the Destruction, where Guy does not arrive at Rome until 
after the departure of Laban's army to Spain. 

In the Destruction no clue is given which would enable us to 
explain why Charles should be constantly applying to Richard in 
the Fierabras (11. 112 et seq.) for information about Fierabras, or why 
Richard, in particular, should know more about Fierabras than any 
one else. There is no mention in the Destruction of Richard chasing 

1 Romania, ii. 1873, pp. 1 48. 

2 Cf.JakrbucJtfiir romanische und englische SpracJie und Literatur, edd. 
Lemcke, vol. xiii. p. 111. 

3 Printed in Verhandlnngen der 28sten Versammlnng deutscher Philologen 
und Sclinlmanner in Leipzig . Leipzig, 1873, p. 209 et seq. 

4 Corresponding to 11. 1410 et seq. of the Ashmole Ferumbrtu. 


the Emir before him in the plain of Home, to which event 11. 3708-9 
of the Fierabras l clearly refer. 

" Richars de Normendie au courage adure, 
Qui cacha 1'amirant devant Romme ens el pre." 

The allusion contained in 1. 26 14, 2 

. . . . " Richart de Normendie, 
Gil qui m'ocist Corsuble et mon oncle Mautrie," 

where Richard is said to have slain Corsuble and Mautrie, the uncle 
of Floripas, is not cleared up by the Destruction, as in the three 
passages, where Eichard is mentioned there (11. 246, 288, 541), he 
does not play an active part at all, whereas from Mousket's analysis 
of the original Fiercibras [Balan] romance, we know how important 
a part Guy and Eichard played in the old poem. 3 There Eichard 
and Guy being sent off by Charlemagne as a first succour to the 
oppressed Eomans, succeeded in delivering Chateau-Miroir, which 
had been seized by the Saracens. The story of the combat around 
Chateau-Miroir, as related in the Destruction, 11. 593 ss., is thoroughly 
different, 4 as besides other variations, there is neither Eichard nor 
Guy concerned in it. 

Therefore, as the contents of the Destruction are not identical 
with Mousket's analysis of the old Balan romance, and as several 
passages alluding to events previously described are left unexplained 
in the Destruction ; and as there is even an instance of the Destruction 
being in contradiction to the Fierabras, the poem of the Destruction 
de Rome cannot be said to be identical with the first part of the 
Balan romance. 5 

1 Cf. Sir as, 11. 8192-3. 

2 Cf. also 1. 2784 and Sir Ferumbras, 11. 1860 and 2059. 

3 See above, p. xi, footnote, and Histoire Poetique, p. 261. 

4 Cf. Groeber, Verhandlnngen, pp. 217-18. 

5 The following differences between the Destruction and the narration of 
Philippe Mousket are worthy of note : 

(i) the combat around Chateau-Miroir is described in a different manner 
in the two poems. 

(ii) the scene of action, which at the end of the Destruction is transferred 
to Spain, remains, according to Philippe Mousket, in the neighbourhood of 
Rome for the whole time. 

(iii) Guy of Burgundy and Richard of Normandy play a most important 
active part before Rome, according to Ph. Mousket, whereas in the Destruction 
this is not the case. 

Now, as to the last two items, they must have been in the original such as 


The Provei^al version and the Destruction are each printed from 
unique MSS., the latter from the Hanover MS., the former from the 
Wallorstein MS. Of the French Fierabras there are seven MSS. 
known to exist. 

a the MS. of the Bibliotheque Rationale at Paris, Supplem. 
frun^., No. 180, which has been followed throughout by the editors 
of the French Fierabras, who in cases of evident errors or lacuna? of 
this MS., consulted the three following MSS. : 

b = the MS. of the Biblioth. Rationale, Lancelot, 7566 3 ' 3 . 

c = the MS. of the British Museum, MS. Keg. 15. E. vi. 1 

d = the MS. of the Vatican Library, Regina 1616. 

D = the MS. in possession of M. Ambroise-Firmin Didot, a small 
fragment of which has been printed by Gautier, Epopees fr. ii. 307. 

E == the Escorial MS., a description of which, together with the 
variations, has been given by Knust, in the Jalirbucli fur romanische 
und englische Sprache und Literatur, vol. ix. p. 43 et seq. 

H = the Hanover MS., which also contains the Destruction de 
Rome. It has been described by Professor Groeber in the Jakrbuch, 
xiii. p. 111. 

they are related \>y Ph. Mousket. For only thus some obscure passages of 
Fierabras, of which even the Destruction affords no explanation, are cleared 
up. Thus, Fierabras, 1. 104!), 

" Pros fu du far de Rome, ses a dedens jetes " 

which is in contradiction to the Destruction, is explained by 11. 4705-6 of 
Mousket's account (see above). Only Mousket relates that Floripas has seen 
Guy before Rome (Fierabras, 1. 2240 ; Ashmole Ferunibras, 1. 1413), and that 
Richard took part at the combat there. Therefore the account as given by 
Ph. Mousket, agreeing with what must have been the contents of the old 
original, is based on a version older than the Destruction, which exhibits 
significant differences. 

These differences between Mousket and the Destruction, as well as the fact 
that several references to preceding events contained in Fierabras remain un- 
explained by the Destruction, were some of the reasons which led me in my 
Dissertation, pp. 41 40, to consider the Destruction as a poem written by 
another author than that o/ the Fierabras. In order to clear up the allusions 
to preceding events contained in the Fierabras, the very beginning of which 
necessarily requires some explanatory account a circumstance which also 
gave rise to the ' episode ' of the Provencal version the Destruction was 
composed as a kind of Introduction to the Fierabras, whereby it happened 
that some allusions remained unexplained. 

1 For a description of this magnificent MS., see Sir Ferunibras, p. vi, 


As to the English Fierabras romances, there are two versions 
/ known to exist : 1 the poem of Sir Ferumbras contained in the 
Ashmole MS. 33 2 and the present poem. 

In the following we shall attempt to point out the differences of 
these two versions, and to examine whether there is any relationship 
between the English and the French poems, and if possible to identify 
the original of the former. 

A superficial comparison of the English poem of Sir Ferumbras 
with the French romance Fierabras (edd. Krceber and Servois) will 
suffice at once to show the great resemblance between the two versions. 
In my Dissertation on the sources and language of the Sowdan of 
Bdbylone (Berlin, 1879) I have proved (pp. 3040) that the Ash- 
_ molean Ferumbras must be considered as a running poetical trans- 
lation of a French original. Since Mr. Herrtage, in the Introduction 
to his edition of the Ashmole MS. 33, has also pointed out the close- 
ness with which the translator generally followed the original, which 
he believes to belong to the same type as the Fierabras, edited by 
MM. Kroeber and Servois. "The author has followed his original 
closely, so far as relates to the course of events ; but at the same time 
he has translated it freely, introducing several slight incidents and 
modifications, which help to enliven and improve the poem. That 
he has not translated his original literally, is shown by the fact that 
the French version consists of only 6219 lines, or allowing for the 
missing portion of the Ashmole MS., not much more than one-half 
the number of lines in the latter, and that too, although he has cut 
down the account of the duel between Oliver and Ferumbras from 
1500 to 800 lines, by leaving out Oliver's attempts at converting the 
Saracen, Charlemagne's prayers, &c." 

Now, in my opinion, we ought not to lay too much stress on the 
fact that the number of lines in the two versions differs, as all trans- 
lators of poetical works, who wish to follow Jheir original as closely 
as possible, will easily be able to render it ' literally ' as long as they 
write in prose. But adopting a poetical form for their translation , 
and still pursuing their intention of a close rendering of their original, 

1 Of. Warton, Hist, of Eng. Poetry, ii. 197-8. 
2 Edited for the E. E. T. S. in 1879, by S. J. Herrtage, B.A. 


they must needs be more diffuse, and the consideration of rhythm 
and rhyme will compel them sometimes to abandon a quite literal 
translation, and to be content with a free reproduction. This is also 
the case with the author of Syr Ferumbras, who, notwithstanding 
the many passages where the French text is not given 'literally,' 
must be considered as a close rhymed translation of the French poem. 
The only liberty which we see the English author take sometimes, 
consists in contracting or amalgamating together those couplets 
similaires, 1 or strophes which contain repetitions. 

But not always did the author thus give up his plan of render- 
ing his original closely : occasionally he has such repetitionary lines 
in the same place as the French poem, as, for instance, in 11. 130 et 
seq. corresponding to Fierabras, 11. 125 et seq. 

The closeness and literalness of his translation is well exemplified 
by his introduction in an English dress of a great many French 
words which are unknown, or at least of a most rare occurrence, in 
English, and which in his translation are found in the same place 
and context, where the French text has them. This will be best 
illustrated by juxtaposing the corresponding phrases of the two 

Ashmole Ferumbras. French Fierabras. 

312 Hit ys rewarded ous two be- 301 ' Nous jujon Olivier, si 1'avons 
twyne J?at Olyuer schal wende esgarde Qu'il fera la bataille 

and take J?e batail au paien deffae.' 

330 Mercy, qua}) he to kyng Charles 333 ' As pies le roy se jete, merchi li 

a priie.' 

3G9 }>at paynede crist 377 ' dont vos Diex fu pent*? 

388 Er y remuvie me of JMs place 392 ' Ains que je m'en rentiie . . .' 

399 y chalenge wi}> J?e to fijt 402 ' je te voel calcngier ' 

457 Parfay, ansuerde erld O. 449 i Par foi, dist Oliviers . . .' 

533 J>at he ne . . maden ^elde his 548 'se Roland s'i combat, ne faice 
body to him creaunt recreant ' 

537 wi> my swerd trencliaunt 553 ' . . . a m'espee trencant ' 

538 Sarsyns, said erld 0. 554 Sarrazins, dist li quans . . . 
551 long man \nfourclmre 579 II ot Venfourceure grant 
558 a ful gret pite, etc. 586 j'ai de toi grant pite, etc. 

1 Of. Gautier, Epopees Francaises, i. 221. " Rien n'est plus frequent, dans 
la Chanson de Roland et dans nos poemes les plus anciens, que la repetition 
double, triple et meme quelquefois quadruple, de certains couplets. Cette 
repetition n'a pas lieu dans les memes termes, ni surtout avec les memes rimes. 
Tout au contraire, la meme idee est reproduite en vers differents, munis 
d'assonauces ou de rimes differentes." 


751 haue mercy of me, iatttail 


781 to remur'ie ]>e of f>is place 
817 lie was cticombt-cd with B\ 
922 J?ey went forth on & pendant 

947 wan hure spere gunne tofaile 
984 At avalyng of an hulle 
1008. 1012 to rescourre J>e barons 
1016 wel longe hadde J?is chas ylest 
1058 and of>re reliques riche ynow 

vvherof y havejtlentee 
1227 for to wyte wat J>ay be and hure 

covyne yknowe 
1316 By an old forsake ^eate of j?e 

olde ant'iqwyte 

1773 sittynge on a grene erber 
1974 Florippe his do^tre )?e cortoyse 

in chain bre j?ar she was In }?e 

paleys yhurde muse and Jjyder 

J?an she gas 
2007 JK>W ert asotid 
2538 a gret repref it were 
3665 brydel and paytrel and al J>e 

gere wif> fyn gold yharneyssed 


3672 and )?e king him gan ascrie 
3791 a gret did j?ay made Jjere 
4541 with an hard crestid serpentis 

5753 on }mn ston a cracchede and in 

a spatte in dispit of god, etc. 

1494-5 nierd li a cri6 : Gentix 

horn . . 

1515 ja par moi n'i series . . TIMI-HC* 
1552 Mais do F. est . . . enrombres 
1696 Gil s'entornent fuiant le pen- 
dant d'un laris 

1712 puant les lances lorfalent 
1734 A Vavaler d'un tertre 
1757 . . les barons rescons . . 
1764 Moult fu grans cele cltace 
1806 Et les dignes reliques dont il i 

ad plente 
2067 Lor coumne et lor estre enquerre 

et demander. 
2144 Par une gaste porte de viel ante- 


2562 . . siet sous eel arbre rame. 
2712 Floripas la courtoise a le noi* 

Puis issi de la cambre, . . . 

Entresi c'au palais . . 
2733 . . vous voi assote. 
3136 . . il nous est reprouvk 
4117 Li estrier furent d'or, rices fu li 


4126 ... si s'est haut escrics. 
4236 . . demainent grant dolour 
4832 vestu ot la pel d'un dur serpent 

5910 en desplt de Ihesu, ens es fons 


Besides these undoubted examples of translation, we must bear 
in mind that there occur some variations of readings, where, indeed, 
the author of Syr Ferumbras seems to have introduced slight inci- 
dents and modifications. But examining them more closely, we shall 
soon become aware that many of them also point to a French original, 
which we may sometimes identify by comparing these variations with 
the readings of those French MSS. that are already printed. Thus, 
the words "barto ys stede ban tyeb he," 1. 91, render exactly a line 
of the Escorial MS. 1 "son cheval aresiia a 1'abricel rose" which 
is omitted in 1. 93 of F (i. e. the French Fierabras, as edited by MM. 
Kroeber and Servois). 2 

1 The variations of this MS. are printed in the Jahrbuch der rowan, and 
cugl. fyraclwn, vol. ix. pp. 43 ss. 

3 This edition, although printed, from the MS. a, may be said to represent 
a group (w>) of 'four MSS., called abed (see above xv). Another group (z) 


The following is another example of A (= the Ashmoleaii 
Fc.nnnlnis) differing from F, but agreeing with E : 

A. E. 

175 Ne lyre he no^t }>ys day til 175 ke il puisse tant vivre que cis 

evene jours soit passes 

2131 Adoun }?ay gunne falle, knellyng 2833 Issi agenoillierent par bones 

on j?e erthe stille ... & kusse- volentez 

dem ever echo ne, etc. ... Us baissent les reliques . . . 

Notwithstanding these resemblances of A to E, in passages where 
A differs from F, E cannot have been the source of A, as there are 
many instances where E and F show the same reading, whereas A 
differs from both versions. 

Thus, A, 1. 340 et seq., it is Duke Eeyner who blesses his son, and 
not Charles, as E and F (1. 357) have it. 

The names of Arrenor, Gwychard, Gayot, and Angwyree, given 
in 1. 814, differ from those which are mentioned in the corresponding 
passage of E and F (11. 1548-49). 

There is no mention of Kargys being slain by Oliver (A 880) to 
be found in E or F (1. 1670-76). 

In A 1178, Lamasour advises the Soudan not to slay the prison- 
ers ; in E and F (1. 1948) the same advice is given by Bndans. 

The names of LambrocJc and Colbrant (A 1616, 1618) are not 
found in E and F, 2424. 

A, 11. 1347-48, are wanting in E and ^(2174). 

is formed by the MSS. E and D. Both groups belong to the same type ;//. 
Of. Grceber, Die handschriftlichen Gestaltungen der chanson de gestt Fiura- 
bras, Leipzig, 1869, p. 27, where we find the following steinma : 


Instead of a giant (^4 1700) we find a giantess mentioned in E 
and F (1. 2483). 

Instead of Roland (^4 1793) it is Naymes who speaks first in E 
and F, 2570. 

These few instances, the number of which might easily be in- 
creased, will certainly suffice to show the impossibility of regarding 
E as the original of A. 

Only a short passage of the Didot MS. has been hitherto printed ; l 
therefore the arguments drawn from a comparison of A with that 
printed passage cannot be considered as altogether irrefutable and 
final. But as the Didot MS. belongs to the same family of MSS. as 

E, we may at once presume, that as E cannot be taken for the 
original of A, the possibility of the Didot MS. being the source of A, 
is not very strong. Besides it may be stated, that no trace of the 
two additional lines (11. 19 and 20 2 ) which the Didot MS. inserts 
after 1. 63 of a (or F) is found in A, although this version gives, in 
11. 52 ss., a pretty close translation of the corresponding passage in F 
(11. 50 et seq.). This may lead us to conclude that the Didot MS. 
was not the source of A. 

Comparing now A with what is known of the Hanover MS. of 
Fierabras, B we find A resembling to H in the following names : 
Lucafer (only once Lukefer in A 2204), Maragounde (once Mari- 
gounde, A 1364), Maubyn A = Maupyn H.A 1700 and 2831, 
which differ from F, equally agree with H. In the last case A agrees 
also with E (although differing from F). Now as we know that H 
together with D and E are derived from the same group zf we may 
perhaps be justified in regarding a MS. of the latter group as the 
original of A. But a more detailed comparison of A with H being 
impossible at present, this argumentation wants confirmation. 

The impossibility of regarding the Provengal version as the source 

1 Epopee* Fran$aues, ii. 307, and Cat. reds, des Her. de la bill. d'Ambr. 

F. Didot, I, 361. 

Groeber, Handschriftl. Gestaltungen, p. 6. 

3 Jahrbuch, xiii. p. Ill, and Zeitschrift fur romaniscTie Philologie, iv. 
p. 164. 

4 "Die Vergleichung weniger aus alien Hss. bekannteri Versen macht 
gevviss, dass H mit D und J$ aus der namlichen Quellc z geflossen ist." 
Jcthrbuch, xiii. 113. 


of the Ashmolean Ferumbras, is proved by the fact that the long 
additional account, the 'episode' as Professor Groeber calls it, 1 is 
wanting in A. Another proof is given by A, 11. 5763 et seq., where 
A agrees with f\ but widely differs from P. 2 

It seems superfluous to point out the inadmissibility of regarding 
the French prose version as the original of A, the first edition of the 
prose version being of a much later date than the Ashmole Ferumbras. 
13ut also that version from which the prose romance has been copied 
or compiled, cannot have been the original of A. For although the 
phrase of A, 3888 " A skuntede as a bore" seems to contain some 
resemblance of expression with the reading of the prose Fierabras 
"il commen9a a escumer come s'il fust ung senglier eschaufe," which 
Caxton translates "he began to scumme at the mouthe lyke a 
bore enchaffed" the reading of A, 11. 1307 ss., which greatly varies 
from Caxton's version (a translation of the French prose Fierabras), 
renders inadmissible the supposition that the original of the French 
prose version is the source of A . 3 

Having thus compared the Ashmolean Ferumbras, as far as can 
be done at present, with all existing versions of this romance, we 
arrive at the following conclusions. 

The Ashmole Ferumbras is a pretty close translation of some 
French version, which we are at present unable to identify. Its 
original was neither of the same family (w) as the Fierabras, edited 
by MM. Krceber and Servois, nor yet of that of the Escorial version. 
Nevertheless, the original of Sir Ferumbras cannot have differed much 
from the common original, from which these two groups of MSS. are 
derived. To this original, called y by Grreber, the MS., from which 
A has been copied, appears to have been more closely related than 
to the Provenal version, from which it certainly is not derived. As 
the liberties which the author of Sir Ferumbras took in translating 
his original, consist only in very slight modifications, we may con- 

1 Handscliriftl. Gestalt., p. 10. 

2 See the note to 1. 5763 of Sir Ferumbras, and cf. Fierabras, 5955. 

3 The number of instances where A varies from C?s version might easily 
be increased. Thus we find A 340 differing from C 52/111 and from F 357 ; 
A 814 differing from C 79/3 and from F 1548; A 1616 differing from C 
102/10 and from F 2424 ; A 1238 differing from C 92/5 and from F 2083 ; 
A 4652 differing from C 171/26 and from ^4900, &c. 




elude from his closeness of translation in general, that in those 
passages of A which exhibit significant deviations from the known 
French versions, these variations are not due to the composer of 
the Ashmolean poem, but were already to be found in its original. 
Therefore the Ashmole Ferumbras may be considered as representing 
by itself the translation of an independent French MS., which per- 
haps belonged, or at least was nearly related, to the type y. 

I now come to the consideration of the Sowdan of_Babylone t 
which the simple analysis given by Ellis, 1 shows to be an essentially 
different work from the Ashmolean Ferumbras. Indeed, whilst. the 
Syr Ferumbras represents only a portion (viz. the second part) of the 
original Fierdbras [or Bdlan, as Gaston Paris has styled it], 2 the 
Sowdan approaches the original more nearly in that it contains the 
long ' introductory account '. 3 For this first part of the Sowdan (as 
far as 1. 970), although it cannot be considered as identical with the 
first portion of the old Balan romance, contains several facts, which, 
however abridged and modified, show a great resemblance with those 
which must have been the subject of the lost portion of the old 
original. Whereas the Ashmolean Ferumbras is, on the whole, a 
mere translation of a French original, the Soivdan must be looked 
upon as a free reproduction of the English redactor, who, though 
following his original as far as regards the course of events, jnodelled 
the matter given there according to his own genius, and thus came 
to compose an independent work of his own. 

This point being fully treated in my Dissertation* I need not 
again enter into discussion of it here. I only mention that the com- 
poser of the Soivdan has much shortened his original, omitting all 
episodes and secondary circumstances not necessarily connected with 
the principal action, so that this poem does not contain half the 
number of lines which his original had, 5 and that the proportion of 
the diffuse Ashmolean Ferumbras and the Sowdan is over five to one. 6 

1 Specimens of Early English Metrical Romances, ed. Halliwell, p. 379 
et seq. 

2 Ilistoire Poetique. p. 251 ; cf. also Revue critique cTHistoire et de 
Litterature, ii. 1869, p.. 121 et seq. 

a Cf. Mr. Shelley's Paper in-Warton, Hist, of Eng. Poetry, ii. 197-8. 
4 pp. 17 et seq. 5 Dissertation, p. 18. 

6 Introduction to Sir Ferumbras, p. xiv. 



The subject of the * introductory account,' or the first part of the 
Sowdan, is nearly the same as that of the Destruction de Rome, dif- 
fering from this poem only in the omission of a few insignificant 
incidents or minor episodes, and in greater conciseness, which latter 
circumstances, however, enters into the general plan of the author. 

Indeed, the author of the Sowdan seems to have known the 
Destruction) as wo see from a comparison of the two poems. Thus 
the following instances show a great resemblance of expression of the 

two versions : 

37 ' With kinges xii and admyralles 

77 * The Romaynes robbed us anone 

75 ' to presente you ' 

76 'a drift of wedir us droffe to 120 


110 ; An hundred thousande* 
128 'To manace with the Cristene 


175-76 ' Oure sheldes be not broke 
nothinge, Hawberkes, spere, ner 
poleyne, ner pole ' 

224-27 'Lukafere, Kinge of Baldas, 
The countrey hade serchid and 
sought, Ten housande maidyns 
fayre of face Unto the Sowdan 
hath he broghte ' 

228 ss. 'The Sowdane commaunded 
hem anone That thai shulde al 
be slayne . . . He saide "My 
peple nowe ne shalle With hem 
noughte defouled be'" 

278 ' He clepede his engynour Sir 
Mavone ' 

289 ' Mahoundis benysone thou shalt 


420 ' Ensemble ou li issirent xv roi 

corone Et xiv amaceours ' 
1 154 * Bien i a xxx roi et xiv admire ' 

689 ' xxx roi sont ou li et xiv ama- 
ceours ' 

163 ' Et xiv amaceours * 

115-16 'De eels de Komenie que 
m'ont fait desrobber. Tiel 
avoir m'ont robbe ' 

119 'vous quidai presenter' 

Uns vens nous fist a Rome 
parmi le far sigler ' 

217 Par C fois M payen ' 

228 ' pour Fran9ois menacier ' 

332 ' Et menace Francois pour faire 
les loye ' 

546-47 * Quant encor nen est lance 
quassee ne brusie, Ne halbers 
derompus, ne fors targe percie ' 

613-19 'Lucafer de Baldas discent 
al mestre tre, Devant Pamirail 
vint, forment Fa encline : Voy- 
ant tot ses barnages Fa 1'eschec 
presente, Moigues, prestres et 
lais, que sont enchenee, Her- 
mites et enfants, a tons lor 
poign lie ; As f emmes et pucels 
les os furent bende, Totes vives 
presentent par devant 1'ad- 

614 ' Maintenant soient tot occis et 
descoupe. Ne voil que mi 
serjant en soient encombre.' 

908 ' Sortibrans a mande Mabon 1'en- 

gineor ' 

627 ' Mai ion te benoie ' 
925 ' Mahou te doint honor ' 
C 2 



286 ' And fille the dikes faste anoone ' 
203 ' Men my ght go even to the walle' 

307 ' The hethen withdrowe hem thQ ' 
317 ' His baner knowe I f ul welle ' 

331 ' He entred to the maistre toure ' 

332 'The firste warde thus they 

wonne ' 

346-50 'And Estragot with him he 
mette With boree hede, blake 
and donne. For as a bore an 
hede hadde And a grete mace 
stronge as stele. He smote 
Savaryz as he were madde ' 

587 ' Therfore Gy of Bourgoyne 1 
Myn oweu nevewe so trewe ' 

647 'He smote of the tray tours hede ' 

648 'And saide "Gode gife him care, 

Shal he never more ete brede, 
AU traitours evel mot thai 

663 'Ferumbras to Seinte Petris 
wente ' 

727 * Thre hundred thousande of sow- 
deours ' 

743 ' Sir Gye aspied his comynge, 

He knewe the baner of Fraunce, 
He wente anoone ayen the Kinge, 
And tolde him of that mys- 


Howe that the cursed sowdone, 
Hath brent Rome and bore the 
relequis awaye ' 

771 ' Wynde him blewe ful fayre and 
gode ' 

778 <T< londe thai wente iwis' 

783 Tithinggis were tolde to Lavan ' 

787 ' With three hundred thousand of 
bacheleris ' 

934 ' Si emplirons les fosses ' 

918 'K'om poet aler al mure' 

952 ' K'om pooit bien au mur et 

venir et aler ' 

979 ' Payen se sont retrait ' 
997 'Jeo ai bien ses armes conu et 

avisee ' 
1011 'Tantost le mestre porte aurons 

moult bien ferme ' 
1057 ' Mais tot le premier bail ont 

Sarasin pople ' 
1090-94 'Estragot le poursuit, uns 

geans diffaes, Teste avoit com 

senglers, si fu rois corones. 

El main tient une mace de fin 

ascier trempe. Un coup a 

Savariz desur le chef done ' 
1179 ' Et Guion de Bourgoyne a a lui 

apelle, Fils est de sa soror et 

de sa parente : Cosins, vous en 

irr6s . .' 

1236 ' Le chief al portier trenche ' 
1244 '"Diex" fist il " te maldie et 

que font engendre, Kar trai- 

tour au darain averont mal 

1260 ' Al moustier de saint Piere est 

Fierenbras ales ' 

iii C mil chevaliers ' 



Guis parceut le baniere le roi 
de saint Dine, Encontre lui 
chevalche, la novele ont conte 
Come la fort cite" li payeu ont 
gast6 * La corone et les clous 
d'iloec fen sont robbe" Et les 
altres reliques . .' 


Li vens en fiert es voilles que 

les a bien guies ' 
1427 ' il sont en terre entr6 ' 
1436 ' Les noveles en vindrent al 

soldan diffaie ' 
1443 'iii C mile 

Other instances of resemblance may be found in the following 
passages : 

8 49-50 = D 94-99 * S 103 = D 202, 209 ; S 119 = D 385 ; 
S 146 - D 445-46 ; S 150 = D 503-4 ; S 157 = D 509 ; S 300 = 

1 The French text will be found in the Notes, which see. 


967; 303 = Z>915; S39G = .D977; 312=:jD989; S 340 
= D 1063; 8360 = D 1101; S 376 = D 1119,1121; S 377 = 
D 1133 ; 8 380 = Z) 1136 ; 699 = D 1379 ; 8 723 = D 1384, 
&c., &c. 

Besides, there are some names which occurring in none of the 
French versions, but in the Destruction, point to this poem as to the 
original of the Soiodan. Thus Savaris 1 (S 171) seems to be taken 
from D 540. 

Astragot or Estragot, S 346, 4902, the name of the giant by 
whom Savaris is slain, and who is said to be the husband of Barrock, 
occurs in D 1090. 

The Ascopartes, a people subjected to the Soudan, are mentioned 
in D 98, 426, but not in F or P. 

King Lowes, in the context where it occurs (S 24) is clearly taken 
from D 9. 

Iffrez, S 165, is perhaps the same as Geffroi in D 1139, 1367, 

[Mounpelers, S 3228, occurs only in D 250, 286.] 

Persagyn, S 1259, seems to be identical with Persagon, D 162. 

The form Laban is only met with in the Destruction, the French 
and the Provencal versions, and the Ashmole Ferumbras reading 
J3alan. 2 

The name of the Soudan's son, Ferumbras, is explained by the 
form Fierenbras, which occurs in D 57, 66, 71, 91, 343, 1210, 1237, 
besides the spelling Fierabras, which is the only one used in the 
French, the Provengal and Caxton's versions. 

Also the phrase ' eowdan ' seems to have been derived from the 
Destruction (1. 1436, 'soldan'), as it does not occur in any other 

The great number of these resemblances seem evidently to point 
out the Destruction as the original of the first portion of the Sowdan ; 
the few points in which the two versions differ not being such as to 
offer convincing arguments against this supposition. 

1 For these names, the Index of Names may be referred to. 

2 In some passages the Destruction shows also the spelling Ualan, but 
Laban is more common. 


Indeed if, for instance, we find a lot of nations, the names of 
which are not in D, mentioned by the author of the poem as belonging 
to the Soudan's empire, this point can be considered as irrelevant, 
as from many other instances we know how fond many composers 
of mediaeval romances were of citing geographical names, by the great 
number of which they believed to show their knowledge in that 
science. 1 Also the three names of Saints (Qwyntyn, Symon, Fre- 
mond 2 ), and the names of five Saracen gods and of a Saracen bishop, 3 
many of which, moreover, seem to be inserted only for the sake of 
rhyme, cannot be regarded as being of great consequence in establish- 
ing the source of the Sowdan. Others also, as Oliborn, Focard, 
Hubert, Gyndard, Tamper (the last occurring twice as a rhyme- 
word), being the names of insignificant characters, may be looked 
upon as mere expletives. Another variation is Isrez (11. 625, 641) 
for Tabour (D 1202). 

Besides these variations in the names contained in the two poems, 
we find in the Sowdan some slight modifications as to the matter 
related ; none of which, however, is of so significant a character, as 
necessarily to point to some other original than the Destruction, 
which the very striking points of resemblance above cited show 
almost decisively to have been the original of the Sowdan. The Dif- 
ferences in the subject-matter may be explained by the tendency of 
the poet to follow his original only as far as the principal events are 
concerned, but to have his own way in the arrangement of the sub- 
ject-matter, and especially to deal freely with secondary incidents. 

Thus he may have thought the combat round Chateau-Miroir 
which, moreover, is related in the Destruction in a rather obscure and 
confused style to be a rather episodical incident, which he had 
better leave out in his poem, as not advancing the principal course 
of events. 

A similar explanation may be given of the fact, that the account 
of Lukafer's desiring the hand of Floripas is given on another occa- 
sion in the Sowdan than in the Destruction. In the Destruction, 
1. 241, Lucafer claims that maiden immediately on arriving in the 

1 See note to 1. 1000. 2 See note to 1. 2842. 

a Dissertation, p. 20. 


Soudan's camp, as a reward for his having travelled such a long way 
in Laban's service. The poet of the Sowdan thinking, perhaps, that 
this was not a sufficient reason to justify such a claim, mentions this 
incident at another time, which he may have considered as more pro- 
perly chosen for demanding a reward. It is on returning from a 
victorious expedition undertaken by Lukafer that the latter in the 
Sowdan, 11. 224 242, asks for the hand of Floripas. 

As to the following or second part of the Soicdtw, on the whole 
the same subject is treated of as in the Ashmole Ferumbras. But 
there are many differences between the two poems. 

In the Sowdan, 1. 1411 et seq., Roland is captured by the Sara- 
cens at the same time as Oliver, and both on being conducted before 
Laban at once avow their names. In the Ashmole MS., 11. 909, &c., 
Oliver is led away to the Soudan together with Gwylmer, Berard, 
Geoffrey, and Aubray, whereas Roland is among the French peers 
whom Charlemagne sends on a mission to Laban to demand the 
surrender of Oliver. 1 

The names of the twelve peers do not agree in both poems. In 
the Sowdan we find the following list (cf. 11. 1653 et seq., and 11. 
1730, 880) : Roland, Oliver, Duk Neymes of Bavere, Oger Danoys, 
Tery Lardeneys, Folk Baliante, Aleroyse of Loreyne, Miron of 
Braban, Bishop Turpyn, Bernard of Spruwse, Bryer of Mountez, 2 
Guy of Bourgoyne. 3 Richard of Normandye, although a most im- 
portant personage, is not included amongst the Douzeperes. Nor is 
Guenelyn mentioned as a peer of France. Four of these names, Folk 
Baliant, Turpyn, Bernard of Spruwse, Aleroyse of Loreyne, do not 
occur at all in the Ashmolean Ferumbras* 

The new game which Lucafer wants to teach Neymes, is differ- 
ently described in the two poems, there being no mention made in 
the Ashmol. MS. (11. 2231 et seq.) of the thread, needle, and coal, as 
spoken of in 11. 1998 2000 of the Soivdan. 

1 See note to 1. 1663. 2 Cf. note to 1. 1723. 

3 Mr. Herrtage, in his note to the Ashmol. MS., 1. 259, reproduces from 
the Eoxburghe Club edition, Introd. p. vi. the list of the twelve peers in the 
French version of the Grenville copy, 10531, which he erroneously takes for 
that of the Sowdan. 

* But there is one " Alorys j?e erld of Brye," mentioned in the Ashm. MS., 
11. 935, 2842, 4076, &c. 


In the Sowdan, 1. 2507, Laban, being engaged with his gods, 
seizes the image of Mahound and smashes it. This incident is 
omitted in Syr Ferumbras (11. 3345). 

In the Ashmole MS., 11. 5760 et seq., Ferumbras tries to persuade 
his father to become a Christian, whilst Floripas urges Charles not to 
delay in putting him to death. In the Sowdan, 1. 3156 et seq., there 
is no mention of either of them interfering either for or against their 

Ashm. MS., 11. 130 et seq., differs greatly from the corresponding 
passage in the Sowdan (11. 1647 et seq.). In the latter poem the 
knights are pulled up from their dungeon with a rope, whilst in the 
former they have their fetters taken off by means of a sledge-hammer, 
anvil, and tongs, &c. 

In the Sowdan, 1. 3044, Eichard of Normandy is left back as a 
governor of Mantrible ; in the Ashmole version, 1. 4881 et seq. t 
Raoul and Howel are ordered to keep that place, whereas Richard 
accompanies Charlemagne (cf. 1. 5499). 

In the Ashm. MS., 1. 5209, Neymes sees first Charles coming 
with his host in the Sowdan, 1. 3083, it is Floripas who first 
discovers the banner of France. 

The prayer which Charlemagne, seeing Oliver in distress, ad- 
dressed to Christ, in the Sowdan, 1. 1304 et seq., is not mentioned in 
the Ashm. version. 

The account of the duel between Oliver and Ferumbras differs 
considerably in the two versions. In the Ashmolean MS., 1. 580, 
the incident of Oliver assisting Ferumbras to arm (cf. Sowdan, 1158) 
is omitted, and it is not Oliver (as in the Sowdan, 1. 1270) who is 
disarmed, but Ferumbras, whom his adversary offers to accept his 
own sword back (Ashm. MS., 1. 680). 

In the Ashmolean version, 1. 102, Ferumbras offers to fight at 
once with twelve of Charles's knights ; in the corresponding passage 
of the Sowdan, 1. 1067, he challenges only six. 

In the Sowdan, 1. 1512 et seq., Floripas advises her father not to 
slay the captive peers, but to detain them as hostages that might be 
exchanged for Ferumbras. In the Ashm. MS., 1. 1178, it is not 
Floripas, but Lamasour, who gives that advice to the amirant. 


As in many of the variations, mentioned just before, there are 
many omissions in the Ashmole MS., which are related in the 
Sowdan, it becomes evident that the Ashmolean version cannot have 
been the original from which the Sowdan was copied, which is also 
proved by several names occurring in the Sowdan, but which are 
not to be found in Syr Ferumbras. Thus, for instance, the names 
of Espiard, Belmore, Fortibrance, Tamper, 1 do not occur at all in. the 
Ashmolean version, whereas other names have quite a different form 
in the latter poem. For Generyse, S 1135, 1239, we find Gar in, 
A 216, 443; Barrock, S 2939, 2943, 3022 = Amyote, A 4663; 
Alagolofur, S 2135, 2881 = Agolafre, A 3831, 4327; and Lalan is 
always spelt Bdlan in the Ashmolean poem, &c. 

Now as there are some passages where the Sowdan, while it differs 
from the Ashm. MS., corresponds with the French Fierabras, we 
might be inclined to think that poem to be the original of the 
Sowdan. Thus Charlemagne's prayer and the name of Bishop Turpin, 
which are omitted in the Ashm. MS., occur in the French Fierabras. 
But there are several differences between the Sowdan and the French 

In the Fierabras, 1. 1933, the French prisoners, on being brought 
before the Soudan, do not avow their true names as they do in the 
Sowdan, 1. 1498. 

In the French poem, 1. 704, Oliver tells his adversary his name 
before the fight begins ; in the Sowdan, 1. 1249, he does not confess 
his true name until they had fought for a considerable time. 

In the Fierabras, 1. 1043, Oliver drinks of the bottles of balm, 
which is not mentioned in the Sowdan, 1. 1190. 

Again, Fierabras, 11. 1329 ss., where Ferumbras having disarmed 
Oliver, tells him to take his sword back again, does not agree with 
11. 1279-82 of the Sowdan. 

Instead of Floripas (S 1515), Brulans advises the Soudan not to 
slay the prisoners in F 1949. 

The French knight slain at the sally of the captives is called 
Bryer in S 2604, but Basin in F 3313. 

1 There is one Teni-pler mentioned in the Ashm. MS., 1. 2673. But he is 
not identical with Tamper of the Sowdan, 11. 2641, 2667. 


Concerning the sacred relics there is no mention made of the 
cross (S 3236) in the French poem, and the signe, i.e. 'the shroud 
or winding-sheet of the Lord' 1 (F 6094), is omitted in the 
So wd an. 

Besides these variations of the two versions there is an incident 
of Marsedag being killed by Guy, and buried by the Saracens 
(S 2247 2274), which being omitted in the Fierdbras proves that 
the author of the Sowdan cannot have followed the French poem, 
or at least not that version which is edited by MM. Kroeber and 

Similarly there is no mention made in the French Fierabras of 
IJryur being charged to take care of the relics and of Charles's 
treasure (S 3204). 

The game of blowing burning coals is related in Sowdan, L 
1996 ss., with several details which are wanting in the French 
poem, 1. 2907. 

The names also do not always agree in both versions. Thus we 
find Generyse, S 1139, for Garin, F 438; Mapyn, S 2325, for 
Maubmn, F 3046; Alagolofur, S 2135, for Agolafre, F 4290 or 
Golafre, F 4267, 4383; Bryer, S 2604, for Basin, F 3313; Mara- 
gounde, S 1563, for Marabunde, F 2196; Boloyne, S 3238, for St. 
Denis, F 6199; BaroWce, S 2939, and Espiard, S 2145, are not 
mentioned at all in the French Fierabras, nor does Belmore, S 3122, 
occur in the Fierabras, either in the corresponding passage, F 5867, 
or elsewhere. 

On the fact that the names of the twelve peers (see above, p. xxvii) 
differ in the Sowdan from those mentioned in the Fierabras, too 
much stress need not, I think, be laid, as it might be explained by 
the simple inadvertence of the composer. The poet in freely repro- 
ducing his source, which he generally followed pretty closely as far 
as relates the course of events, well remembered the names of the 
principal French knights; but having forgotten those of less im- 
portant characters, some of whom do not appear again in the poem, 
and being obliged to fill up their number of twelve, might have 
placed any names which he remembered having met with somewhere 
1 Greek mMv. Cf. Dissertation, pp. 45-4G. 


as included in the list of the donzeperes. By an oversight he omitted 
to mention Richard, whom however we see appear afterwards. 1 

Similarly the names of Laban and Ferumbras for Balan and 
Fierabras afford no convincing proof of the impossibility of the French 
Fierabras being the original of the second part of the Sowdan, as 
the poet, having found those spellings in the Destruction, the source 
of the first portion of his romance, might simply have retained them 
for the whole poem. 

But reviewing all the facts of the case, and taking into account 
those passages which relate incidents omitted in the Fierabras, and 
which the author of the Sowdan therefore cannot have taken from 
that poem and further taking into account the several differences 
between the two versions, which, it may be admitted, generally speak- 
ing, are only slight ones the French Fierabras, i. e. the version 
edited by MM. Kroeber and Servois, which represents the group w 
(see before, p. xix, footnote), cannot have been the original of the 
second part of the Sowdan. 

Proceeding now to a comparison of the Sowdan with the Escorial 
MS., 2 we have not found any passage where S differing from F 
agrees with E, as E and F generally have in those places the same 
reading. Therefore the Escorial IMS. cannot be regarded as the 
original of the Sowdan. 

Unfortunately the fragment printed from the Hanover MS. is too 
short to allow of an exact comparison with that version. We only 
know 3 that some names, the spelling of which in the Sowdan differs 
from that in the other versions, have the same form in the Hanover 
MS. as in the Soivdan. Thus we find the following names agreeing 
in both versions : Lucafer, Marayoncle, Maupyn. Only instead of 
Laban which is used in the Sowdan, we read Balan. In the frag- 
ment printed by Grceber, 4 we find the name of the Soudan's son 

1 See note to 1. 2535. 

2 There being only a small fragment printed of the Didot MS. (Epopees 
Fr. ii. 307), a comparison of the Sowdan with this version is impossible at 
present. But as the Didot MS. belongs to the same group as E, what results 
from a comparison of S with E may be assumed for the Didot MS. 

3 See Zeltschrlft filr romanische Pkilologie, iv. pp. 164, 170. 

4 Jahrbuch fur romanische und cnglische Sprache und Literatur, xiii. 
p. 111. 


with the same spelling as in the Destruction, Fierenbras, which is 
nearer to Ferumbras than Fier&bras. 1 

This resemblance of the names contained in the two versions 
might lead us to believe the Hanover MS. of Fierabras to be the 
original of the second part of the Sowdan, just as the Destruction, 
found in the same MS., is the original of the first part. But as, 
according to Gaston Paris, the Hanoverian version " is the same as 
the printed text, differing only in slight variations of readings," 2 we 
may suppose it likely that in all passages where the Sowdan differs 
from the printed Fierabras, it also differs from the Hanover MS. 
Nevertheless, as the differences between the Sowdan and the printed 
Fierabras are, on the whole, not very significant; for the several 
instances of omission in the Sowdan, being easily accounted for by 
the general plan of the poet, cannot be regarded as real variations ; 
and as some names, the spelling of which differs in S and F, are 
found to be identical in S and H, we might, perhaps, be entitled to 
think the second part of the Sowdan to be founded on a MS. similar 
to the Hanover one. 

It still remains for us to compare the Soiodan with the Provencal 

In most cases where differs from F, it also differs from P, 
therefore S cannot have taken those variations of readings from the 
Provenyal poem. 

The account of the knights sent on a mission to Laban, in 
S 1663 1738, considerably differs from the corresponding passage 
in P 2211 ss. 

In P the scene of the whole poem is placed in Spain, there is no 
mention of the combat before Rome, 3 as in the first part of the 

The game of blowing a coal, S 1996 ss., is not mentioned in the 
Provenal version. 

From these variations, taken at random out of a greater number, 

1 This example is not very striking, as the spelling Ferumbras may simply 
have been retained from the first part of the poem ; see above, p.' xxxi. 
a Syr Ferumbras, Introduction, p. xiv, footnote. 
3 See HandschriftUche Gestaltungen, p. 14, and Dissert., p. 29. 


it becomes evident that the Provengal poem has not been the original 
of the Sowdan. 

If now we compare the Sowdan with Caxton's version, which we 
know to be simply a translation of the French prose romance of 
Fierabras ; l the few following instances of differences between G and 
S will show at once, that also that version from which the prose 
romance was copied or compiled 2 cannot have been the original of 
the Sowdan. 

There are several variations in the names contained in the two 
versions. Thus we find Ballant in G for Laban in S; Fyerabras in 
G for Fer\mibras in S ; Garin, G 55/3 = Generyse, S 1135; Amy- 
otte, G 176/26 = Barrokk, S 1135, &c. The game of blowing a 
coal is told with more details in S 1998, and somewhat differently 
from G 118/24j the incident of Laban's seizing the image of 
Mahound and smashing it, which is related in $ 2507, is omitted in 
C, &c. 

Looking back now to our investigation concerning the original of 
the Sowdan, we sum up what results from it, in the following resume : 

Most probably the Destruction de Rome is the original of the first 
part of the Sowdan. As to the second part, we are unable to iden- 
tify it with any of the extant versions. The French Fi&rdbras, as 
edited by MM. Krceber and Servois, is not the original, but the 
differences between the two poems are not significant ; apparently a 
version similar to the Hanover MS. may be thought to be the original. 

The Sowdan is no translation, but a free reproduction of its 
originals ; the author of the Sowdan following his sources only as far 
as concerns the course of the principal events, but going his own 
independent way in arranging the subject-matter as well as in many 
minor points. 

The Sowdan differs from the poem of Syr Ferumbras in two 
principal points : 

(1) In being an original work, not in the conception, but in the 
treatment of the subject-matter, whereas the Ashmolo Fc.rumlras is 
little more than a mere translation. 

1 Histeire Poetique, p. 157. 

2 And to which only a few very insignificant additions were made by the 
author ; see Hist. Poet., p. 99, bottom. 


(2) In representing, in its first portion, the first part of the old 
Balan romance, whereas Syr Feruinbras contains only the second. 
But as that second part of the old Balan romance appears to be con- 
siderably modified and greatly amplified in the Ashmole Ferumbms, 
so the first part of the Sowdan contains a likewise modified, but 
much shortened, narration of the first part of the old Balan poem, so 
that the Soicdan has arrived to become quite a different work from 
the original Balan or Fierabras romance, and that a reconstruction 
of the contents of that old poem would be impossible from the 


As regards the language of the Sowdan, the first point is the 
dialect. Looking at the plurals of the present indicative in -en or -n, 
we at once detect the Midland peculiarities of the poem. Thus we 
find, 1. 1331, gone rhyming with one, 1. 1010, goon : camalyon, 1. 506, 
gone : than, 1. 1762, lyven : gyfen, 1. 1816, lyyleven : even. 

The verbal forms of the singular present indicative and of the 
second person sing, preterite of weak verbs lead us to assign this 
poem to an East-Midland writer. The 2nd and 3rd person singular 
present indicative end in -est, -eth; and the 2nd person sing, preterite 
of weak verbs exhibits the inflection -est : 1. 1202, goist : moost ; 
1314, 1715, knowest; 1344, trowest ; 1154, Uowest ; 1153, saiest ; 
2292, forgetist; 560, doist ; 1193, doistowe ; 1093, gotli : wroth, 
1609 -.loth, 1620 -.doth; 1728, sleith : deth ; 561, sholdest ; 1244, 
shuldist; 603, madist ; 563, hadist ; 2219, askapedist, &c. Twice 
we find the 2nd person preterite without -est (made, wroght) ; but see 
the note to 1. 2. 

If, now, we examine the phonological and inflectional peculiar- 
ities of the Soivdan, we find them thoroughly agreeing with those of 
other East-Midland works, 1 which still further confirms the sup- 
position of the East-Midland origin of the poem. 

See Morris's Preface to Genesis and Exodus, Skeat's Introduction to 
the Dane, and Mall's edition of Harrowing of Hell (Breslau, 1871). 


/ or y, the descendants of original u (which in Old English 
[Anglo-Saxon] had already become y or i in consequence of i- muta- 
tion or umlaut) are found rhyming with original i: 11. 449, 881, 
kyn : him, 2060 : ivynne ; 1657, fille : stille ; 1973, fire : desire, &c. 
It must, however, be noted that the rhyme If ing : inne (1. 372) or 
king : tiling (11. 173, 236) cannot be regarded as an East-Midland 
peculiarity, because king, drihten, cliikken, the i of which is a modifi- 
cation of original u, are to be met with in all Middle-English dialects, 
as has been shown by Professor Zupitza in the Anzeiger fur deutsches 
Altertum, vol. vi. p. 6. 

Old English short a, which is liable to change into a, appears in. 
this poem 

(1) always as o, before n- combinations (nd, nt, ng) : 531, 
stronge : istonge ; 3166, bronte : fonte ; 214, amonge : longe, &c. 

(2) as a, before the single consonants m and n: 1120, name : 
shame, 935 : same, 1739 : grame; 785, 1773, man : Lavan ; 3125, 
came : Lavan (cf. 2579, Lavan : tane) 5 2160, came : dame, &c. 
The fact that com (11. 547, 1395, 3095, &c.) is used as well as cam 
as sing, preterite indie, need occasion no difficulty if we remember 
that the original short a (or o) of cam (or com) had already been 
lengthened into 6 in the O.E. period. 1 Came and come as pret. sing, 
are employed indifferently in Chaucer as well as in the Celestin (ed. 
Horstmann, Anglia, i. 56), which is known to have been composed 
in the East-Midland dialect. 

long, from O.E. a, in our poem has that broad sound which 
is peculiar to the East -Midland dialect. We find it rhyming 

(1) original 6: 1025, wrothe : sothe; 801, goo : doo ; GO, inowe : 
Howe ; 325, so : ido, &c. 

(2) unchangeable a : 257, Aufncanes : stoones ; 506, gon : than; 
2049, agoon : Lavan, &c. 

As many East-Midland works 2 the Sowdan has three forms for 
O.E. J>ar: thare, thore, there, all of which are established by the 
rhyme : 1805, thore : Egremoure (cf. 2895, Egremoure : tresoure, 
1003, Agremore : more)', 126, thore : lore; 430, thare : sware ; 

1 See Sweet, Anglia, iii. 152. 2 Cf. Mall. Harrowing of Hell, p. 18. 


2245, there : chcre, 2404 : bere ; 2604, there : were (wseron), 208 : 
were (werian), &c. 

We likewise find sore and sare 1 (O.E. sare) : 1196, sore : more ; 
166, sare : care; 1377, sore : thore. 

The O.E. diphthongs ea and eo and the O.E. $ (mutated from ea 
or eo) appear as e in this poem : 1595, me : see, 632 : fee, 1339 : 
free, 405 : be; 1535, depe : slepe; 1011, 1523, dere : here; 963, 
yere : vere, 1257 : Olyvere ; 996, nere : were; 596, 1528, nede : spede ; 
1702, eke : speke ; 1726, leke : speke; 184, 215, 1208, shelde : felde ; 
2530, hevene : elevene, &c. 

A brief summary of the grammatical inflexions employed in the 
poem will also give evidence of a great similarity with the forms 
used by other East-Midland writers, and will serve to show that the 
language of the Soiodan agrees closely with that of Chaucer. 

In the declension of substantives the only remnant of case- 
formation by means of inflexions is the ending used to form the 
Genitive Singular and the Plural. 

The genitive singular of nouns ends in es (sometimes written -is 
or ys) for all genders: 356, develes ; 1209, stedes ; 849, worldis ; 
1804, worldes; 3Q35,dammes; I64:l,nedes; 1770, shippes ; 1072, 

Substantives ending in -s in the nominative case, remain un- 
changed in the genitive case: 1214, 1287, Ferumbras ; 2006, 
Nai/mes; 3207, Charles; 1639, 1350, Floripas.Florip, 1. 614, is 
the genitive case of Floripe or Florip, 1. 2027, 1571. 

The nominative plural of all genders is formed by -es (-is, -ys} or 
-s: 919, knightes, 1947, 2^6,knightis; 1384, 7*0m?s, 1401, horsi/s ; 
429, 2054, gatis; 192, wordes ; 837, swerdes ; 174, hedes ; 2289, 
ladies; 3271, soules ; 26, bokes; 60Q,peres ; 297, tours, &c. Examples 
of a plural case without s are seen in thinge, 1. 2, 1709 : O.E. \ing ; 
honde, 987, O.E. handa, as well as hondes, 1412, 2568 ; frende, 3212, 
O.E. frtfnd, as well as frendes, 1011, O.E. freondas. Other plurals 
which are equally easily explained by their O.E. forms are : eyen, 
825, O.E. eagan; shoone, 1381, O.E. sceon; fete, 1403, O.E. fet t 
fote, 1427, O.E.fotum, 2673, O.E. fdta. 

1 Cf. Schjpper, Alexiuslegenden, 98/121. 


To mark the difference between the definite and indefinite forms 
of adjectives is a difficult task ; as the final -e had in most cases 
already become silent in the poet's dialect, it seems probable that he 
no longer observed the distinction. 

The pronouns are the same as in Chaucer and in other East- 
Midland poems : /, me, thou, the ; he, hym ; sche, her and hir ; it 
and hit (cf. note to 1. 41) ; we, us; ye, you. The plural of the per- 
sonal pronoun of the 3rd person is thai and he (cf. note to 1. 2698) 
for the nominative case ; hem, and in some doubtful passages (see 
note to 1. 88) thaym for the accusative case. 

As in Chaucer, the pronoun of the 2nd person is often joined to 
the verb : hastow 1680, maistow 1826, shaltow 1669, icoltow 1727, 
wiltow 1151, artow 1967, kanstow 2335, &c. 

Possessive pronouns : myn and thyn are used before vowels and 
before h ; my, thy before consonants. Only once, 1. 90, my is placed 
before a vowel. His, hire and here ; our, your ; here and (twice, 
623, 1244) thair. 

The demonstrative pronouns are this, these or thes ; that. 

The definite article the or \e, is used< for all cases singular and 
plural. But we find besides, the following examples of inflexion : 
tho, 2063, O.E. J?a, and the accusative sing. ]>on, 108. In 1. 2052, tho 
means ' them, those' = Lat. eos. Tha, 1. 2639, seems to be a mis- 
take of the scribe, it is perhaps miswritten for \at (day), cf. 1. 619. 

Men, 115, 1351, and me, 287, are used as indefinite pronouns. 
Everyche, every, everychone occur frequently. Note also ichoon 
2774, ilka 2016; thilke 2644, eche 1865. 

That or \at, who, whome are used as relative pronouns. The 
interrogative pronouns are who and what. 

* Verls. The plural imperative ends in -eth or -th, which, how- 
ever, we find frequently omitted, as in 1. 194, prove you, 2078 
proveth; 2131 sende, 167 sendith ; telle 1977, tellyth 1625, &c. 

The -n of the infinitive mood is often dropped, as in Chaucer : 
274, 1588, sene : bene; 1124, see : tre; 658 : cite; 600, be : cite ; 1225 : 
contre; 1411, flee : cite; 3065,/ee^ : men; 1282, sloo :mo; 792,sloone : 
one, &c. 

The final -(e)n of past participles of strong verbs is in most cases 



dropped, as in Chaucer : 317Q forlonie : borne, 32 bom, 3011 wonne, 
21 wonnen, 2756 comen : nomen, 155 come, 2476 holpe, 1362 bygote, 
1026 Moice, &c. 

Weak verbs form their past participles in -ed, -d, -et, -t, much as 
in Chaucer : lerned 3042, eyde 1648, toolde 670, logt 111, delte 
526, displaied 133. 

The prefix /- or ?/- occurs sometimes, icome 784, come 155, 
istonge 533, tYa&e 49, taken 1430, &c. 

The present participles end in -inge and ande, as is often the case 
in East-Midland works : 2831 prikandr. : comande, 435 cry ande, 
924 malfande, 3225 mornynge : Itynge, 2399 slepynge : honde, where 
evidently slepande is the true reading. 

As in Chaucer the 2nd person preterite of strong verbs is some- 
times formed by -est or -ist, Ittist 2167 ; but we find also regular 
forms, as in slough 1259, where, however, the O.E. e (sloge) is 
already dropped. 

The -en or -n of the preterite plural and of past participles is 
commonly dropped, ronnen 3007, ronne 2959, took 477, toltene 2621, 
slough 78, sloughen 401, ido 327 : so, &c. 

The -d in the past participles and in the preterite of weak verbs 
is sometimes omitted, as often happens in East-Midland works. 
Thus we find comforte 2242 and comforted 312, commaunde 57 and 
commaunded 228, grannie 607, liste 1132, list 1966, discumfite 1464, 
&c. On the same analogy we find light 1125, 1189, and lighted 
3109, worth 1203, and worthed 1163. 

As regards the final -e's, it may be remarked that the scribe has 
added many final -e's, where the rules would not lead us to suspect 
them, and has often given a final -e to words which in other passages 
of the poem, although similarly used, have no e : 'note 245, 274, not 
255, 313; Iwce, 19, how 275; undere 61, under 713; lute 247, but 
8; cooste 202, coo^ 3062; cm/te 424, craft 2335; ashamede 1295, 
ashamed 558, &c. 

This is due either to carelessness on the part of the scribe, or 
perhaps to the fact that in the speech of the copyist the final e's had 
already become altogether silent, so that finding many words ending 
in -e and not knowing its meaning, he considered it as a mere 


"ornament in writing" (Ellis, Pronunciation, i. 338), and sometimes 
added, sometimes omitted it. 

With respect to the composer of the Sowdan himself, there may 
be some doubt left whether in his speech the final e had become 
altogether silent, or was still pronounced occasionally. From the 
following instances it may be concluded with certainty that the poet 
very frequently did not sound the final e : 757 boghte : noght, 3154 
hat : fat, 961 wronye : destruction, 556 onlace : was ; cf. also 1383, 
1611, 2163; 2795 speke we of Richard, 2999 fought, 2093, 859 
fringe, 9, 2547 kepte,-834: wente, 142 come, 713 wode. 

In other cases there is no certainty whether the final e is quite 
silent or must be slightly pronounced or slurred over, so as to form 
trisyllabic measures. It must be noted, however, that in supposing 
trisyllable measures in all these doubtful cases, the number of this 
kind of measure will increase to a great amount in the Sowdan. 
Therefore I rather incline to think the final e silent also in the fol- 
lowing instances : 2090 defende this place, 1201 breke both bake, 
861 come from dl, 2119 aske consaile, 1597 wole these traitours, 1783 
whens come ye, 2317 passe that brigge, 1100 ronne bylwene, 2997 
fought so longe, 175 broke notJnnge, 1658 bedde with right, 713 grene 
wode side, 571 home to Rome that nyght, 1610 the fdls jailour fedde 
your prisonere, 2152 fdls traitours of France, 921 charged the yonge 
witli dl, 380 aboiite midnyghte, 726 sone to him, 160 unneth not 6ne 
[Chaucer still pronounces unnethe]. 

Nevertheless there seems to be some instances where the final e 
is to be sounded, as in 11. 298, 2790, 1332, 1619, 2740, 592, 2166, 
2463, 1405, 2386, 895, 332, 91. 

Final en also seems sometimes not to constitute a separate syl- 
lable : 1365 waiten uppon me, 459 breken our wdllis, 45 slepen with 
opyne y^e, 485 c6men by the cost, 2313 diden it about, &c. 

In all these cases n had very probably already fallen off in the 
speech of the poet, as the following examples lead us to suppose : 
178 wynne : him, 1582 dye : biwry, 2309 shewe : trewe, 2107 slepe to 
I6nge, 861 come from dl, &c. 

As regards the final es of nouns, the poet seems to have observed 
the same rules as those followed by Chaucer j viz. es is sounded when 

d 2 


joined to monosyllabic stems ; it does not increase the number of 
syllables (and therefore is often spelt -s instead of -es), when the stem 
has two or more syllables : 197, 277 goddes, 665 nailes, 445 tentes, 
2068 tent'is, 174, 1799 hedes, 2032, 2868 swerdes, 2327 walles, 1209 
stedes, 1770 shippes, 2702 somers, 2687, 2591 felowes, 2660 felows, 
2412 maydyns, 647, 1597 traytours, 2036 orders, 45 lovers, 2612, 
3098 develes, W72faderis, 203, 862 sowdons, 881 *r^?z*. 

The final es of adverbs seems no longer to constitute a separate 
syllable : 2213 hongecP els by, 2786 'els had' he, 2109 ellis 1 may 
singe, 1525 elks woV he, 2061 them, 1783 whens. 


THE poem is composed in four-line stanzas. The arrangement of 
the rhyme is such that the 1st and 3rd lines rhyme together, and the 
2nd and 4th together, which gives the following rhyme-formula : 
a I a b. The rhyme-endings employed in one stanza do not occur 
again in the next following. 

But it must be noticed that there seem to occur some instances 
of eight-line stanzas, one of which, beginning at 1. 1587, is built on 
the model employed by Chaucer, Others are arranged differently. 
Those beginning at 11. 1059 and 1219 show the rhyme-formula 
ababacac, in that of 1. 1411 the 2nd and 4th lines are 
rhymed together, and the 5th and 7th, whilst the 1st, 3rd, 6th, 8th, 
all end with the same rhyme. The formula for the stanzas beginning 
at 11. 807, 879, 1611 isababcbcb. In the stanza of 1. 939 all 
the pair lines are rhymed together, and the odd ones also, which is 
the only instance in the poem of eight consecutive lines having only 
two rhyme-endings, as generally eight lines show four different rhyme- 
endings, and three only in the passages cited above. But the whole 
stanza of 1. 939 seems not to be due to the author; he has very 
probably borrowed it from some other poem. 1 

Turning now our attention to the fact that the lines occurring 
between the Initials or Capital Letters, which are met with in some 
passages in the MS., are often divisible by eight, we might feel 

1 See note to 1. 939. 


inclined to regard this as an additional reason for considering the 
stanza employed in the Sowdan as an eight-line one. Indeed, the 
portion from the Initial of 1. 1679 to the next one of 1. 1689 might 
be taken for one single stanza. The 24 lines from 1. 575 (beginning 
with an Initial) to the next Initial in 1. 598 might equally be con- 
sidered as three stanzas, whilst there are 5 times 8 lines = 5 eight- 
line stanzas from the Initial of 1. 2755 to the next Initial in 1. 2795. 

In all these instances the supposition of eight-line stanzas would 
suit the context, as is the case also with other passages. Thus in the 
following cases it might seem as though eight lines taken together 
were more closely connected and made better sense than four lines, 
e.g. 11. 583598, 17031710, 16791686, 939962, 10431050, 
244 ss., 455 ss., 631 ss., 1059 ss. 

But, on the other hand, it must be borne in mind that there aro 
also a great many cases where, as regards the sense, four lines can be 
considered as an independent whole, when, e. g., the speech spoken 
by a person is contained in four lines, and the words of another 
person replying to the first follow in the next four lines. Very often 
also these next four lines contain only a part of the second person's 
reply, so that the remainder of his reply falls into the following 
stanza. This * enjambement ' or continuation of the sense, and some- 
times of the syntactical construction from one stanza to another, need 
not, of course, prevent us from admitting the supposition of eight- 
line stanzas ; as, upon the whole, it is met with in all poems com- 
posed in stanzas, and as it is frequently used in Le Morte Atthur 
(Harleian MS. 2252, ed. Furnivall), which is written in eight-line 
stanzas ; but as there is no instance known of an eight-line stanza 
containing four different rhyme-endings, which at this supposition it 
would be the case with the Sowdan, the eight-line stanzas contain- 
ing either three rhyme-endings, as in Chaucer, or two, as in Le Morte 
Arthur, and as in some passages of the Sowdan (11. 1691, 1695, 1699, 
1711, 1715), we find Initials placed after four lines, I believe a 
stanza of four alternately rhyming lines to be the one intended by 
the composer a metre which, according to Guest, History of Eng. 
Rhythms, ii. 317 'must have been well known and familiar during 
the fifteenth century.' The few eight-line stanzas quoted above, may 


then bo owing either to the inadvertence of the poet, who somewhat 
carelessly employed one of the two rhyme-endings of one stanza a 
third and fourth time in the following one, or, perhaps also, he inten- 
tionally retained that rhyme-ending, and he inserted eight-line stanzas 
amongst those of four verses as a mere matter of variation. It is 
perhaps not impossible that the retention of this rhyme-ending was 
not greatly felt. 

As regards the rhymes themselves, they are both monosyllabic or 
masculine rhymes, and dissyllabic or feminine ones. Frequently they 
are used alternating with each other, as in the stanzas beginning with 
1. 2755. 

Sometimes we find four feminine rhymes occurring in an un- 
broken succession, as in 11. 1263-66. But it must be noticed that 
the number of masculine rhymes is predominant. Thus the stanzas 
beginning with 11. 3047, 3063, 3123, 1123, 791, 1035, 1271, 1275, 
2019, 1311, 1351, 1463, &c., contain only masculine rhyme-endings. 

The rhymes are not always full and true ; there occur many 
imperfect ones. 

(1) A word in the singular number is often rhymed with a word 
in the plural number, which therefore has an additional s (or es) : 
797, thinge : tidyngys ; 2647, fyght : hnyghtes ; 2087, light : 
hnightes; 1455, cosynes : hinge; 2272, laye : dayes ; 2395, 885, 
Ogere : peres ; 2456, alle : walles ; 2682, nede : stedes ; 944, mone : 
stoones; cf. also 2376, wile, : beguiled. In 1. 68, poundis : dromonde ; 
the rhyme becomes perfect in reading pounde, as in 1. 2336, instead 
of poundis. 

(2) Single n is found rhyming with n- combinations. 

a. n : nd cf. 814, ychoon : Maliounde ; 912, pavilone : Ma- 
hounde ; 1201, crowne : Mahounde. Therhyme, 162, Rome : houne, 
may be explained in the same manner, for houne stands for hounde, 
as it is spelt in 11. 237, 2377, 935, 1756. 1 

(3. n : ng cf. 2349, Mapyne : endinge ; 86, Apolyne : tithing e ; 
370, inne : hinge; 1455, cosynes : hinge; 3249, Genelyne : hinge; 
3171, serpentyne : endinge; 959, destruction : wronge. 

1 " This elision of a final d in such words as hond, Innd, sJield, held, &c., is 
by no means uncommon in ancient poetry, and arises simply from pronuncia- 
tion." Morris, Specimens of Early English, 320/261. 


In 614, love : vowe, the second rhyme vowe does not contain 
the consonant v. 

(3) Khymes imperfect as concerns the consonants. 

m : w cf. 76, Rome : one; 1672, 364 : done; 2443, 366, come : 
done; 747, some : soudone ; 1323, came : than; 1488, came : ranne ; 
2128, tyme :pyne; 177, him : wynne ; 2375, him : tene ; 447, 859, 
him : kyn; 2004, hi/me : skyne ; 2353, him : inne. 

f ; vcf. 341, twelve : selve ; 415, wife : alive ; 1762, gyfene : 
lyvene; 1912, gife : lyve. But in all these cases the rhymes are 
really perfect, they seem only imperfect in consequence of the copyist 
writing indiscriminately / and v. Thus the rhyme of 1. 341 reappears 
in 1. 1867, self : twelf. In 1. 2336 we find gefe, which is written ge\e 
in 1. 198; lefe, 1. 764; safe, 1. 864, are spelt with v in 11. 1340, 
1529, 2808. 

I . ?? c f. l. 363 ? coiisaile : slayne. Quite similar is 1. 1251, 
felde : sende. 

p . j f l. 820, stoupe : stroke. A similar rhyme occurs in Guy, 
1. 10903, scapid : nakid. 

d ; t 1. 2868, gyrde : sterte; 1151, plete : dede. 

d : p 1. 283, tyde : depe. But this rhyme is very .probably 
owing to the scribe. For depe we ought to read wide. 

A single consonant rhymes with a double consonant. The only 
certain instance occurs in 1. 311, tyde : chidde. For in 11. 312, 317, 
dele : icelle, we might read wele, as this word is frequently spelt in 
the poem; cf. 11. 385, 2618, 1173, 1651, &c. For dedde in 1. 2980 
(rede : dedde) we may substitute dede, which occurs in 1. 2510. The 
rhyme glad : hadde, 2687, becomes perfect if we read gladde, which 
is the usual spelling of the word in the poem ; cf. 11. 439, 570, 918, 
&c. Besides, I believe hadde to be monosyllabic. Ferre : nere 
1. 1575 ; in 1. 117 we find fere. 

The rhyme, 1. 2654, sloughe : drowe can easily be restored in 
reading slowe, which occurs frequently, as in 11. 2401, 2683, 304, 
2208, &c. The rhyme ane : shafe, 555, seems to be due to some 
clerical error. 

(4) Rhymes imperfect as concerns the vowels. 

a : e 2803, gate : lete; perhaps we are justified in reading late, 


cf. Havelock, 328 ; 1. 2752, made : dede. The rhymes tJtare : were, 
1383 ; bare : there, 671 ; Agremare : there, 33, are really perfect 
ones, as we know the poet to have used thare, there, and thore indis- 
criminately ; cf. 11. 208, 2604, 430, 1805, 1003; 1. 1436, ladde : 
nede ; 2365, ladde : bedde, the author probably pronounced ledde. 
For lefte, 1. 2335 : craft, we may read lafte, as is shown by 1. 424, 
lafte : crafte. In 11. 1781, 544, teue : than, the rhyme will be 
improved by reading then. 

a:o (cf. p. xxxv) 504, thane : gone ; 1 1 43, 1079, Rolande : honde ; 
133, sowdone : Lavan (where we might read sowdan, as in 1. 1491) ; 
627, sowdane : towne; 2527, 1684, Roulande : londe. 

i (y) : e. This rhyme also occurs in Chaucer ; cf. Ellis, Pron. i. 
272; see also Guy, p. xiv. 1. 21419, him : hem; 1299, dynte : 
lente; 523, strike : brelce ; 1643, mylcfe : slielde ; 1263, togedere : 
thidere; 1277, wepenless : iwis ; 344, shitte : mette ; 2538, hende : 
wynde (read ivende), &c. ; 1. 82, vilane : remedye (read vilanye, as in 
11. 179, 2577) ; but 1015, vilane : me, cf. Guy, xi, v 813, sle : 
curies ye ; 895, we : lye; cf. Ellis, Pron., i. 271. 

The monophthong y is rhymed with a diphthong, the second part 
of which is y : 1. 441, Sarsynes : Romaynes ; 2761, Apolyne : 
agayne; 2105 : slayne ; 2175 : eyne ; 2280, dye : waye (cf. 1582) ; 
589, fyne : Bourgoyne. 

o : ou (ow). 1. 1023, wrothe : southe (which is written sothe in 
11. 2014, 2024, 2246, 2719); 779, fonde : grounde ; 260, clarione : 
soune ; 879, Hone : crowne ; 2780, malison : toivne, &c. Cf. also 
1264, endured : covered. 

o : e. 463, oost : best. The rhyme is restored in reading rest 
instead of oost. 

: i. 1. 966, sonne : begynne. 

ue : ewe. 1. 2312, vertve : fewe. But this rhyme cannot be ob- 
jected to, as " final French u (as in due) was diphthongized into eu 
in Chaucerian English." 1 

Other irregularities are: 1. 112, donate : roivte ; 1987, use . 
house; 1131, thou : lough; 1200, moost : goist ; 1730, dethe : sleith ; 

1 Cf. Mr. Nicol's Paper in the Acartrmy of June 23. 1877, vol. xi. p. 564, 
col. 1, and Seventh Annual Address of the President to the Philol. See., p. 2. 


2136, pas : grace ; 1611, was : mace (in which cases e is silent) ; 931, 
1144, peris : fiers. 

A line or verse generally contains four accented syllables, separ- 
ated from each other by one or by two unaccented syllables, so that 
there are some instances of trisyllabic feet, as in 11. 817, 834, 2035, 
2301, 2791, 3020, 3073, 2313, &c. In 11. 692, 695, two accented 
syllables are put close together without being separated by an un- 
accented one, which is altogether wanting. In some passages we find 
lines of three accented syllables alternating with those of four accents, 
as in 11. 575582, 763770, 839846, 871878, 22872290, 
&c. But in most cases lines with four accents follow each other in 
an unbroken succession, as in 11. 1372, 9951010, 10261029, 
10671107, 11471154, 17311734, &c. 

A few instances of verses with more than four accented syllables 
are also to be met with in the Sowdan. They are either due to the 
author and therefore intended, as in 1. 37, where the poet almost 
literally imitates his original, 1 or they may be considered as due to 
some clerical error, in which case the metre generally can be restored 
by a slight emendation. 

A verse has generally an iambic effect, that is to say, the first foot 
begins with an unaccented syllable, which is followed by an accented 
one. Frequently, however, the first accented syllable is preceded by 
two unaccented ones, as in 11. 41, 75, 127, 151, 367, 849, 1060, 
1815, 1819, 2289, 2758, &c. There are some instances of the first 
foot consisting of a single (accented) syllable only, the unaccented 
one being altogether wanting, as in 11. 2120, 2288, 2374, 2394, &c. 


GEORGE Ellis attributes the present poem to the end of the four- 
teenth or beginning of the fifteenth century. " I think," he says in 
his Specimens of Early English Metrical Romances, ed. Halliwell, 
p. 380, " it would not be difficult to prove from internal evidence, 
that the present translation 2 cannot be earlier than the end of the 
fourteenth or beginning of the fifteenth century." 

1 See the note. 

2 Although 1. 25 says that the story of the Sowdan "is written in Romance," 


Having seen from the summary of grammatical peculiarities that 
there is a great similarity between the language of Chaucer and that 
of the composer of this romance, we might be inclined to consider 
the latter as a contemporary of Chaucer. From some passages of the 
fiowdan, which seem to contain allusions to Chaucerian poetry, we 
may conclude that the poet must have known the Canterbury Tales. 
Thus 11. 4246 : 

" Whan kynde corage begynneth to pryke, 
Whan ffrith and felde wexen gaye, 
And every wight desirith his like, 

Whan lovers slepen with opyn yje, 
As Nightingales on grene tre "... 

appear to be imitated from the Prologue of the Canterbury Tales, 

11. 1012: 

" And smale fowles maken melodie. 
That slepen al the night with open eye, 
So priketh hem nature in her corages." 

Further on we remark in 11. 939-40 : 

" O thow, rede Mar} Armypotente, 
That in the trende baye hase made J?y trone." 

some traces of resemblance with the Knight? s Tale, 11. 1123-26 : 

"And downward on a hill under a bent, 
There stood the tempul of Mar^ armypotent. 
Wrought al of burned steel, of which thentre 
Was long and streyt, and gastly for to see," 

which may still be compared with the first lines of the Prologue of 
Queen Amlida and False Arcite : 

" Thou ferse God of armes, Mars the rede, 
That in thy frosty centre called Trace, 
Within thy grisly temples ful of drede, 
Honoured art as patroun of that place." ' 

Now the Prologue of the Canterbury Tales and the Knight's Talc, 
being written in couplets, or lines arranged in pairs, were certainly 
composed after 1385, 2 or rather after 1389. 3 From the treatment of 

this cannot induce us to consider our poem as a mere translation. . It is, on 
the contrary, a free reproduction of a French original. 

1 Cf. also Lindsay's History of Squyer Meldrum, 1. 390 : 

" Like Mars the God Armypotent." 

2 Cf. Prioress's Tale, ed. Skeat (Clarendon Press Series), p. xx ; and 
Furnivall's Trial Forewords, p. 111. 

3 Cf. Chaucer, ed. Morris, i. 205, footnote. 


tlic final e's, which, contrary to Chaucer's usage, seem to have been 
silent in a great number of cases in the poet's speech, we may further 
conclude that the Sowdan must be somewhat later than the Canter- 
bury Talcs. Therefore the poet of the Soivdan cannot have been 
merely a later contemporary of Chaucer ; I rather think it to be more 
probable that he must have lived some time after him. This would 
bring us to the beginning of the fifteenth century as the date of the 

As to the name and profession of the poet nothing is known, and 
we have no clue whatever from the poem. 

The present edition of the Soivdan is printed from the unique 
m of the late Sir Thomas Phillips, at Middle Hill, Worcestershire, 
which is now in the possession of the Kev. John E. A. Fenwick, 
Thurlestane House, Cheltenham. Sir Thomas Phillips purchased the 
MS. at Mr. Heber's sale. 1 The oldest possessor's name which we 
find noted, is on the reverse of the last leaf of the Manuscript, where 
is written, " This is John Eteyes (or Ebeye's) boke, witnes by John 
Staff" in a hand circa temp. Eliz. or Jac. I. By some notes made 
by former possessors on the first fly-leaf of the MS., and by the 
autograph names which we find there, we learn that Geo. Steevens 
bought the MS. "at Dr. Farmer's Sale, Friday June 15, 1798, for 
1: 10. 0." On May 20th, 1800, it was "bought at the Sale of 
Geo. Stevens, for 3. 4. 6." by " 0. Grah m Gilchrist." 

A transcript of the MS. made by Geo. Stevens had been pre- 
sented by him to Mr. Douce. This copy was re-transcribed by Geo. 
Ellis, who, in 1811, published some extracts with an analysis of the 
romance in the Specimens of Early En<ilish Metrical Romances? The 
same copy has been followed by Halliwell, who in his Dictionary 
of Arch, and Prov. W., has several quotations 3 from the present 
romance, which he styles as "MS. Douce, 175." 

1 Billiotlieca Ifcberiana, Part xi. p. 162. MSS. Lot 1533. 

2 Ed. Halliwell, p. 379 et seq. 

5 For instances, see the following words : Atamc. alayned, amoved, 
assorte, avente, forcer, &c. 


The poem of the Sowdan was first printed by the Roxburghe 
Club in 1854. 1 The text of the present edition differs from that of the 
editio princeps in so far as punctuation is introduced, which is alto- 
gether disregarded by the MS. and the Roxburghe Club edition. In 
some passages words which have been written as one in the MS. are 
separated in the text; thus a laye, 1. 2694 ; a ras, 1. 645, are printed 
instead of alaye, aras. Sometimes also words written separately in 
the MS. are united by a hyphen, as be-falle, 14 ; i-wiss, 71 ; i-sought, 
725; with-oute, 841; a-bide, 818; a-ferde, 1337, &c. These slight 
deviations from the MS., which are always indicated in the foot- 
notes, seemed advisable on account of the great help they afford the 
reader in understanding the text. More important emendations and 
corrections of evident scribal blunders and other mistakes are given 
in the foot-notes, and will be found explained in the Notes. 

The Index of Names will be useful to those who wish to compare 
the Sowdan with any other version of the romance. 

The Glossarial Index contains besides the obsolete terms all those 
words the spelling or the signification of which essentially differs 
from that now accepted. Words which show only slight orthograph- 
ical variations from their modern form have not been included, as the 
reader will have no difficulty in identifying them. 

In conclusion I have the pleasant duty of acknowledging the 
invaluable assistance which Professor Zupitza at all times readily 
and freely gave me. My best thanks are also due to Mr. Furnivall 
and to Mr. Napier for their kind advice and suggestions, and to 
Mr. Herrtage for collating a transcript of the poem with the MS. 

Berlin, January, 1S81. 

1 London. Printed by William Nicol, Shakspere Press, MDCCCLIV. 



SINCE the Introduction was written, I have had an opportunity of 
seeing the Hanover MS. of the French Fierdbras. The kind offices 
of Professor Koner exerted on my behalf secured me the consent of 
the Administration of the Royal Hanoverian Library to have the 
MS. sent to Berlin, and their most generous permission to consult it 
freely in the Reading Room of the University Library. 

Haying now compared the Sowdan more closely with the Hanover 
MS., I must state that the final result arrived at in my investigation 
concerning the original of the Sowdan (cf. p. xxxii) is in no way 

As already stated above (p. xxxii), and as the subsequent 
examination and the passages of H quoted below will serve to 
confirm, the Hanover version is, generally speaking, the same as the 
printed version of the Fierabras, differing only in slight variations of 

The names in which S differs from F, but agrees with H, are 
already spoken of on p. xxxi. But there are several others in the 
spelling of which H agrees with F, but differs from S. Thus we 
find Balans or Balant in H for Lalan in S ; Gfuarin, H, leaf 80, 
back, F 438 = Generyse, S 1135 ; Agolafres, H, leaf 81 = Alagolofer, 
S 2135 ; Amiotte, H, leaf 83, back = BarroWc, S 2939, etc. 

As to the subject-matter, there are no instances where S, differing 
from F, agrees with H. In all points in which S differs from F we 
find it also differing from H. 

Thus the game of blowing a burning coal, in the description of 


which S slightly differs from F, is related in // \vith nearly the same 
words as in F. As, besides the small fragment printed by Groeber in 
the Jalirbuch, xiii, and some few remarks in the Zeitsclirift fur 
rom. P/iiL, nothing is known of the Hanover MS., the following 
passages printed here may serve to show how little H differs from 
F. The game of the coal (S 19962016, F 29072934) is thus 
described in H, leaf 58 : 

" Veillard, dist Lucafer, vow.? m eavez juer, 
Vows ne savez en France le grani charboun soffler. 
Certes, ceo dist li dus, mais n'en oie soffler. . 
Et respont li payen : Mais te feray mostrer. 
Ly payen vait le due au grant fowel mener. 
Qwrtnt Rollant 1'ad veu, a Berard 1'ad mostre 
Ore p0rres boue jeu ver et esgarder. 
Dahait qui ne laira ly et Naimes juer. 
Lucafer se beysa pur un tison combrer, 
Trestote le plus ardant quil i poet trover, 
Par tiel air soffla le fu qil li fist voler. 
Puis ad dist a Names ' Ore vows covent soffler.' 
Names prist le tison qui bien se sout aider, 
Vers le payen s'en va pur le tison sofler. 
Pur ceo le fist ly dus qa ly se volt meller, 
Si suffla le tison qe le fist allumer, 
Le barbe et le menton fist au payen bruler, 
Tres parmy le visaie en fist la flame virer, 
Qe par un sule petite qe nel fist souuiler. 
Q?/nt le voit ly payen, le sane quida deueher. 
II jette a .ij. ses maines, qi le quide frapper, 
Mais ly dus le ferry tres parmy le costes, 
Qe les oilz de la teste ly fist en fu voler. 
Puys 1'ad pris par le flank, s'il voit en le fu ruer. 
Lichiers, dist dus Names, Dex te poet mal doner, 
Tu me quidoies ore come fole cy trover." 

The distribution of the relics, in which S (cf. note to 1. 3238) 
differs from J* 7 6195 et seq. is related as follows in //, leaf 100 : 

" A U baron seint Dynis fu mult grant I'assemblee 
J\ Au perron au londy fu la messe chanter, 
Illok fu la corone partie et desseveree, 
L'un moite fu a saint Dynis donee 
Et un clow ansiemewt, cest verite proves, 
De la Corone fu un partie a Ais porte/9, 
A Compaigne est 1'ensigne en 1'eglise honored, 
Et les altres .ij. clowes a Orliens fu enveietf, 
Maint present fist Charls de France la loie 
Des saintisme reliqes. Jh&m de maiestes. 
En 1'onur de Deu est mainte eglise fonder, 
La feste de lendit fu pur iceo estoree. 
Jaiaz videront cens ne taille donee. 


Ne tardoit que .iiij. ans k'Espaigne fu gastef. 

La fu la treison de Eollant porpensee, 

Qe Ganes le vendist a la gent diffaee, 

Puys fu as chiuals sa chars destreinetf, 

Pinables en fu mortz de suz Lyons en la pre<?, 

La le vengea Terris au trenchant del espee, 

Puys fu pendu armes par gulee pare<?, 

Toutz iours vegnent traitors a mal destined 

Ou aloignee ou apres ia ni aueront duree. 

Charles voit a Orliens, la chancheon est fine*? 

Au deu vous commande, tote j'ai ma chancon fine. 

De eels romance est bone la line et l'entre<?, 

Et en mileue et partote qi bien 1'ad escoutec 

La beneiceon aez de Deu et del vw'gine honore. Amen." 

The miracle (F 6101 6123) 1 of the glove, in which Charles had 
placed fragments of the thorns, remaining suspended in the air for over 
an hour, the description of which is omitted in the Sowdan (cf. 
Dissert., p. 29), is related as follows in H, leaf 99 : 

" T 'EMP.&HERS de France fist forement a loier 
_I_J II a fait un table sur .ij. trestes lever^ 
Et par de sur un paille qui fu fait outre mer. 
Illok fist Charlna la corone aporter, 
Puis ad fait 1' arcevesqe pa/'tir et deviser, 
Si ad fait les reliqes mult bien envoluper, 
Dedens son mestre coffres les a fait deffermer, 
Et les altres reliqes qe il voudra aporter. 
Les petites espignons qil vist esgruner, 
De la saint corone qil fist demenbrer, 
Trestote les acoillye nostre emp^rer ber, 
Et les mist en son gant qanqil pout trover. 
Un chivaler le tent qil vist lez ly ester, 
Mais al ne 1'aperceut my qe nele oit parler. 
Charlemayn retiret sa mayne, si lesse le gant aler. 
Et dex a fait le gant enmy 1'air arester 
Tant que d .j. leue en pout home bien aler ; 
Kar la presse fu grant, ne Ten puis remenbrer. 
Charlemayn comande 1'ewe apporter. 
De son gant ly sovengre si quant il dust laver, 
Mais ne sect a ky le comanda abailier, 
Par desur la gent le vist en 1'air esteer, 
L'arcevesqe la monstre et tuit 1'altre barne. 
Ceo fu mult grant merveille, home en doit bien purler, 
Charls a pris son gant, s'est assis au soper." 

//, leaf 37, agrees with F, 1. 1043, in making Oliver drink of the 
bottles of balm, which is not mentioned in the Sowdan, \. 1190 
(cf. p. xxix). 

1 Cf. Sir Ferumbras, 185/5988. 


Similarly we find S 2604 differing from //, leaf 62, where we 
read Basyns ( = Basin, F 3313) instead of Bryer. 

Again H, 1. 40, agreeing exactly with F, 1. 1329 et seq., differs 
from S 1279-82 (cf. p. xxix). 

Instead of Floripas, S 1515, it is Brulans, //, 1. 49, and F 1949, 
who advises the Soudan not to slay the prisoners. 

The names of the twelve peers are the same in H as in F (cf. p. 
xxvii) ; and the whole scene of the peers being sent one after the 
other on a mission to Laban (cf. note to 1. 1665 of the Sowdan) is 
described exactly alike in F 2263 2282 and in H, leaf 51, back, with 
the only difference that the names of the peers are given in a 
different order in both versions, Richard of Normandy, who is sent 
off as the sixth in F, being the second in H. 

These variations of S from H clearly exemplify the impossibility 
of regarding the Hanover MS. as the original of the Sowdan. But 
as on the whole these differences are not of a very significant nature, 
and as, moreover, part of these variations may perhaps be attributed 
to the favourite habit of the author of going his own way in the 
arrangement of the subject-matter and in some minor points, whereas 
in the essential course of the events he strictly adhered to his source 
(see above p. xxxviii, and cf. note to 1. 2535) ; and as besides there 
are several names, the spelling of which differs in F, agreeing in S 
and If, I think there can be no doubt that the original of the second 
part of the Sowdan was a version similar to the Hanover MS. 

If now we compare the Hanover version with the Ashmole 
Ferutnbras more closely than has been possible on page xx, there 
are some instances where A, whilst differing from .F, agrees with H. 

H. A. 

If. 27. Ha Glout, dist Karlemaines, 163. A glotoun, saide \>e Emperer 
If. 27. Que puis vivre que cest jours 175. Ke It/ve he no^t Jjys day to be 

fu passes evene 

If. 25, bk. Ses chiuals ad reine a un 91. par to ys stede f>an tyej?e he 

arbre rasmee 

Et garda les leges tote contreval 
li pree 

Nevertheless, the following passage in which A agrees with F t 
but differs from JET, will at once show the impossibility of regarding 
// as the original of A. 


A. H. 

302. panne J?er come bifore Charloun, If. 28, bk. Atant se sunt drecie 
Gweneloun and Hardree, Guinelons et Alores 

In other instances A is found differing from H as well as from F. 
Thus the name of Enfaclwun, A 4652, which is Effraons in F 4900, 
does not occur at all in H, which in the passage corresponding to F 
4900, as well as in that corresponding to .F4913, reads A/ricons U 

Again, in the story of Myloun, in which A, L 2008 et seq., differs 
from F t we find H disagreeing from F, 2734 et seq., and from A : 

" Volez vous queer de feme essaier et esprover 
Del riche due Milon vow,? deverez remenbrer, 
Qe tant nori Galans qe ly fist adouber, 
Puys ly tolly sa feile Gabaen au vis cler, 
L'enfes Marsilion en fist desherriter. 
Quant 1'entent Floripas, du sens quida deueer." (ff, leaf 56.) 

But in most cases in which F differs from A, If agrees with F. 

Thus we find Ferumbras challenging only six French knights in 
H, If. 26, as in F, 84, 105, instead of twelve in A, 1. 102. 

In A, 1. 5204, Floripas, swooning away, is upheld by Oliver, 
whereas in F, 5373, and in H, If. 90, it is Guy who keeps her from 

For Howel of saint Miloitn, A 5574, we read Huon de saint Lis 
in F 5792, and Hugon de saint Lis in H, If. 95, bk. 

As in -F 2912 it is to Berard that Eoland speaks in H, If. 57, bk., 
and not to Olyver, as in A 2234. 

That Maubyn scales the walls by means of a ladder of leather 
(A 2406) is not mentioned in F 3061, nor in H, If. 59, bk. 

In .4 1386 Floripas gives Oliver, who is wounded, a warm draught, 
which heals every wound ; in F 2209, as well as in ff, If. 51, it is by 
a bit of the mandrake plant that he is heajecj. 

The maid-attendant mentioned in A 1238 (chaniberere) is a man- 
attendant in F 2083 (chamberlenc) and in H, If. 49, bk. (ckamler- 

There is no trace of the additional lines of A, 11. 48674875, to 
be found in H, If. 86 bk., nor in F, 5094. 

Among the relics spoken of in A, there is nowhere a mention 
made of the signe. In H we find the signe always mentioned 



together with the crown and the nails, just as in F. In the passage 
quoted above from H, If. 100, and in the line which corresponds to 
F 6094, we find ensigne instead of signe ; but ensigne certainly must 
be looked upon as a clerical blunder. In the other passages in which 
we find " the winding sheet, or shroud, of the Lord " mentioned in H 
it is also called signe : 

"Et rendrai la corone et le signe honore." 

H, If. 42 = F, 1498 ; and H, If. 45, bk. = F, 1805. 
" Et lea saintismes clowes et le signe honores." H, If. 57 = F, 2829. 

That the signe cannot be the "inscription of the cross" (cf. 
Introduction, p. xxx) is proved by an additional line of the Hanover 
MS., in which the Archbishop is said to have covered the heads of 
the French with the signe : 

" Puys a trait 1'ensigne qui bien estoit ovres 
Engenolant 1'ad ly Eois tote oue lermes baises, 
Plus flairoit ducement que basine enbasinea. 
Quant Franceis 1'ont veu, ele vous effraes, 
De pite et de ioy fu chescous enplores. 
L'erceresqe le prist, mult fu bieu purpenses, 
Et nos Franceis en a les chefs envolupes, 
Puis le mist sur le paille qest a or ornes, 
Od les altres relikes dont illi out asses." 

H, If. 98, corresponding to F, 6094 et seq. 

Abstaining now from citing any more passages where H agrees 
with F, but differs from A, I think the few quotations above will 
suffice to show the impossibility of regarding the Hanover MS. as 
the original of the Ashmole Ferumbras, notwithstanding that there 
are some resemblances of A to H (cf. p. xx). Therefore the result 
arrived at on p. xxi as to the original of the Ashmolean version is in 
no way altered by the detailed comparison of A with H. 


Laban, the Soudan of Babylon, who was residing at Agremore in 
Spain, went to the chase in a wood near the sea (p. 2). Being tired 
of hunting he sat down under a tree, and, perceiving a ship drawing 
near unto the shore, he sent one of his men to hail the vessel and to 
inquire for news. The interpreter of the vessel informs the soudan 
that the ship, freighted with a rich cargo at Babylon designed as a 


present to Laban, had been driven by violent storms to the shore 
near Eome, where the ship had been robbed, and many of its people 
had been slain by the Eomans. He solicits the Soudan to revenge 
this insult. Laban promises to make them pay dearly for it (p. 3). 
He convokes a war-council, and assembles a hundred thousand men 
and seven hundred sail. Himself goes, with Ferumbras his son and 
Floripas his daughter, in a dromond richly adorned (p. 4). They dis- 
embark in the haven of Rome, slay all Christians, and burn towns, 
abbeys, and churches. The pope of Eome assembles his council (p. 5). 
Duke Savaris is to meet the Saracens. With ten thousand men he 
draws near the Soudan's pavilion on the shore (p. 6) ; they slay ten 
thousand Saracens. The Eomans, though masters of the field, 
cautiously retire within the walls of the city. Lukafer of Baldas, 
having scoured the country, brings ten thousand Christian maidens 
to the Soudan, who orders them to be put to death (p. 7). Lukafer 
demands Floripas for his wife, in return for which he promises her 
father to bring Charlemagne and his twelve peers to the foot of his 
throne. Floripas agrees to accept him when he has fulfilled his 
promise. The next morning Lukafer assaults the city, but the 
ditches being too deep (p. 8), the Saracens are obliged to retire. 
On the following day the assault is renewed, the ditches are, on 
Mavon's advice, filled with faggots. After a sharp conflict, where 
there were ten thousand Saracens slain by the stones of the Eomans, 
the heathens are obliged to withdraw (p. 9). This second repulse 
makes the Soudan almost mad with vexation ; he chides his gods. 
But Lukafer told him that he had learned from a spy that Savaris 
would, on the following day, come out again to fight with them. He 
now intended, when Savaris was engaged in the battle, to unfold a 
banner made exactly like that of the Eomans, and to attempt, by this 
stratagem, to be admitted within the gates. And so it turned out : 
the Eomans mistaking him for Savaris returning from his sally, he 
entered the main tower, and slew all therein. Savaris, noticing the 
artifice of the enemy, and seeing his troop reduced to seventy-two 
men, turned back, but found the gate shut (p. 10). Estragot, a 
black giant of Ethiopia, slays him with his steel-mace. The Pope 
having summoned his council, a senator suggested the necessity of 

e 2 


sending messengers to Charlemagne to ask his aid. They all assented, 
and three messengers (p. 11) left the city by a postern at midnight; 
they passed the enemy's camp without being noticed by any wight. 
On the next morning Laban attempted a third assault; he commanded 
every man to throw pikes and bills over the walls to kill the 
Eomans, and ordered the ships to go up the water with their boats 
bound to the mast, that they might fight in close combat. Near the 
tower there stood a bulwark, or " bastile," which was a strong defence 
to the wall. It was thrown down by stones hurled from an engine. 
Laban, growing proud from this event, summoned the Eomans to 
surrender. Instead of an answer a Roman hurled a dart at his 
breast-plate, but his hauberk shielded him. The Soudan, more than 
mad, charged Ferumbras to destroy them all (p. 12), and enjoined 
Fortibrance and Mavon to direct their engines against the walls. 
The great glutton Estragot, with his heavy mace, smote on the gates 
and brake them in pieces. But as he was entering one of the gates, 
they let the portcullis fall, which crushed him to the ground, where 
he lay crying like a devil of hell. The Romans rejoiced, but the 
Saracens grieved. They withdrew to their tents, leaving behind the 
corpse of Estragot, whose soul went up to Mahound (p. 13). The 
Pope called all his people to St. Eeter's and proposed to them to 
attempt a sally with twenty thousand men, to attack the enemy 
before day-break within their camp, and to leave ten thousand for 
the defence of the city. In the morning the Eope displayed the 
banner of Rome, and after a prayer for the preservation of the city, 
they inarched out. But Eerumbras, going his rounds (p. 14), noticed 
their coming, sounded the alarm, and drew up his troops. Then 
began a fierce struggle. Ferumbras slew Sir Bryer of Apulia (p. 15) 
and the worthy Hubert. Nine thousand heathens were killed and 
eight thousand Romans. Lukafer destroyed eighteen Romans; he 
also slew Gyndard, a senator of Rome, who had killed ten Saracens. 
Then came the Pope with a great escort and his banner before him. 
Ferumbras, supposing him to be the sovereign (p. 16), burst open the 
thick crowd and threw him down to the ground. But having 
opened his ventail, he saw his tonsure, and recognized the Pope. 
" Fie, priest," he said, " what doest thou here in the battle-field 1 


It would be a shame for me to slay thee. Go home and think of 
thy choir-service." The Pope, being glad to get off so easily, retired 
to Eome with five thousand men, fifteen thousand being killed. 
Charlemagne, having learned from the messenger the great disaster 
which had befallen the Eomans, said he would not desist until he 
had chased the Soudan and Ferumbras out of Christendom (p. 17). 
He gave ten thousand pounds of francs to his nephew, Guy of 
Burgundy, and sent him off with orders to advance against the 
Soudan by forced marches. Himself would follow as soon as possible. 
Iri the mean time Laban reminded Lukafer of his vaunting promise 
to bring him Charlemagne and his twelve peers in return for his 
daughter Floripas. Lukafer said he would do all he had promised. 
With ten thousand men he attacked the city on one side, the other 
being assaulted by Ferumbras. The combat continued as long as 
daylight lasted. At night they retired to their tents (p. 18). Then 
treason was planned by Isres, who by inheritance possessed the guard 
of the chief gate of the town. He went to the Soudan and offered 
to betray the city on condition that his life and property should be 
spared. The Soudan promised it. Ferumbras with twenty thousand 
men went with Tsres, but on entering the gate he caused the traitor's 
head to be struck off by the portcullis and to be carried on the point 
of a spear through the city. " Treason," cried the people (p. 19), when 
Ferumbras advanced into Rome. All the streets were soon covered 
with dead men. Ferumbras went to St. Peter's, seized the relics, the 
cross, the crown, and the nails, burned the whole city, and carried 
away all the treasures and the gold to Agremore in Spain, where the 
Soudan went back to stay. Three months and three days they spent 
there in great festivities, making offerings to their gods, and burning 
frankincense in their honour. They drank the blood of beasts and 
milk, and ate honey, and snakes fried with oil (p. 20). When Sir 
Guy, approaching, drew near Rome, he found the whole city in 
flames. He grieved much that he had arrived too late, and resolved 
to wait there for Charlemagne, and then to tell him how Laban had 
burnt the city, and had sent the relics to Agremore, his principal town 
in Spain. Soon king Charles advanced to rescue Rome with his 
twelve peers and three hundred thousand soldiers (p. 21). Roland 


led the vanguard, Oliver the rear, and the king was with the main 
body. The provisions were conveyed by sea. Guy, seeing the army 
come, went to meet the king, and told him the mischief done by the 
Soudan, who, moreover, had made a vow to seek Charles in France in 
order to afflict him with grief. "He will find me near," said 
Charles, " and shall pay dearly for it. Unless he consents to be 
baptized (p. 22), he shall never see Babylon again." They all took 
ship without delay. Propitious winds drove them into the river 
Gase, where they landed, thirty miles from Agremore, and laid waste 
the country. Laban, hearing this news, was astonished at Charles's 
presumption (p. 23). He assembled all his barons, and charged them 
to bring him alive that glutton that called himself king of France, 
and to slay the rest of his army. Ferumbras went forth with many 
Saracens. He meets with Roland. They deal each other heavy strokes. 
Oliver cuts off a quarter of Lukafer's shield. The combat lasted 
the whole day. Well fought the twelve peers (p. 24). Ferumbras 
charges Oliver. King Charles, seeing this, rides at Ferumbras, and 
strikes his helm with a heavy mace. Ferumbras cannot approach 
him on account of the crowd. Charlemagne slew thirty Saracens 
with his sword Mounjoy. Lukafer of Baldas encountering Charles 
told him that he had promised the Soudan to bring him Charles and 
the twelve peers. Charles strikes him on his helmet (p. 25), but 
Lukafer is rescued by a great throng. Roland, drawing Durnedale, 
cleared a space around him, and hammered the heads of the Saracens. 
So did the other peers, and thirty thousand Saracens were slain. At 
night the pagans quit the field. Ferumbras vows never to desist 
until he has conquered Roland and Oliver (p. 26) and been crowned 
king at Paris. Charles went to his pavilion and thanked God 
and St. Mary of France. He praised the elder knights for having 
won the victory, and exhorted the young ones to take example by 
them. They all make merry and go to supper. The Saracens 
address a prayer to the red Mars Armipotent (p. 27), to grant the 
Mahometans the victory over the Christians (p. 28). In order to 
recruit the late losses in his army, the Soudan sent for his vassals, 
and assembled more than three hundred thousand Saracens at 
Agremore. He addressed them (p. 29) in order to increase their 


ardour, ordered a solemn sacrifice to his gods, and charged Ferumbras 
to march with thirty thousand of his people against the Christian king 
(whom he wished to teach courtesy), and to slay all his men except 
Eoland and Oliver (p. 30), if they would renounce their gods. 
Ferumbras led out his troops ; until arriving near Charles's camp, he 
ordered them to halt in a wood, and advanced with only ten of his men 
to the camp of Charlemagne, and offered to fight at once against six 
of his peers. If he should conquer them, he would lead them away to 
his father's hall ; but if he should be conquered, lie would be Charles's 
man. The king sent for Roland and ordered him to undertake the 
combat. Eoland refuses (p. 31), because Charles had praised the 
old knights : they might show their prowess now. Charles, vexed, 
smites Roland on the mouth, so that the blood springs from his nose, 
and he calls him a traitor. Roland draws his sword, but the other 
barons separate them and try to conciliate them. Meanwhile Oliver, 
who being sorely wounded kept his bed, on hearing of this dispute, 
had armed himself and went to Charles. He reminds the king of his 
long services, in reward for which he demands the battle. Charles 
remonstrates with him. But Oliver insists (p. 32). He rides to the 
forest, and finds Ferumbras alighted under a tree, to a branch of 
which his steed was tied. " Arise," he said, " I am come to fight 
withthee." Ferumbras, without moving, demands his name. "lam 
Generyse, a young knight lately dubbed. " Ferumbras observes : 
" Charles is a fool to send thee ; go and tell him to send me Roland 
and Oliver and such four other douzeperes. For little honour were 
it to me to fight with thee." " Spare thy words," replies Oliver, 
"and take thy arms" (p. 33). Ferumbras is wrath and seizes his 
helmet, which Oliver assists him to lace. Ferumbras thanks him, 
courteously bowing to him. They mount their steeds, and rushing 
together like fire of thunder, they have their lances broken. They 
draw their swords. Ferumbras smites Oliver on his helmet so that 
the fire flies. Oliver strikes at the head of Ferumbras, breaks away 
the circle of his helmet, and the sword glancing off down his back, 
he cuts off two bottles of balm (p. 34), which he throws into the 
river. Ferumbras tells him that they were invaluable to a wounded 
man, and. that he should atone for their loss with his life. He 


strikes at Oliver, who wards off the blow with his shield, but his steed 
is killed under him. Oliver quickly starts up and tries to kill his 
adversary's horse, but Ferumbras rides off and ties it to a hazel. 
" Yield thyself to me," says Ferumbras, " believe on Mahound, and I 
will make thee a duke in my country, and give thee my sister " (p. 35). 
" Ere I yield to thee," answered Oliver, " thou shalt feel my strokes." 
They fight for a considerable time ; the blood runs from both their 
bodies. By mutual consent they stop to take breath. Ferumbras 
again asks Oliver his name and kin. " Thou must be one of the 
twelve peers, as thou fightest so well." "I am Oliver, cousin to 
Charlemagne." "Thou art welcome here," says Ferumbras ; "thou 
slewest my uncle (p. 36) ; now thou shalt pay the penalty." The 
fight continued the whole day. At last Oliver, smiting Ferumbras 
upon the helmet, had his sword broken. He ran to the steed at the 
tree and seized a sword that was hanging there, but in turning on 
Ferumbras, he received a blow that made him kneel down (p. 37). 
But he returns Ferumbras a fearful stroke. Charles, seeing Oliver on 
his knees, prayed to Christ that he might grant the victor}'' over the 
pagan. An angel announced to him that his prayer was heard. Charles 
thanks God (p. 38). The fight begins again. Ferumbras breaks 
his sword on Oliver's helmet. He runs for another and asks Oliver 
to surrender. But Oliver aims at him a blow which cuts his 
hauberk, so that his bowels are laid bare. Ferumbras implores his 
mercy, and consents to be christened, his gods having proved false. 
He requested him to take his hauberk (p. 39), to fetch his horse, 
and to carry him to his own tent. But the Saracens who lay 
concealed in the wood rush out. Oliver, being surrounded, sets 
down Ferumbras under an olive-tree, and defends himself with his 
sword, dealing the Saracens many a hard blow. Then Roland 
rushed into the throng of the enemy and slew many (p. 40). His 
horse being killed by arrows and darts, he fights on foot, but his 
sword breaking, he is taken and led away. Oliver rides to rescue 
him, but his horse being also killed, he is overpowered and bound. 
Both were conducted to Lukafer of Baldas (p. 41). Charles sees 
them, and calls for a rescue. Many enemies were slain by the 
French barons, but the Saracens had fled with their prisoners, and 


Charles is obliged to turn back. Under a holm tree they find 
Ferumbras, whom the king is going to put to death. But on his 
requesting to be baptized Charles took pity on him (p. 42), led him 
to his tent, and ordered a surgeon to attend him. He soon recovered, 
and bishop Turpin baptized him by the name of Floreyn. But he 
continued to be called Ferumbras all his life. Afterwards he was 
known as Floreyn of Rome on account of his holiness. Roland and 
Oliver being brought to the Soudan, Laban enquires their names. 
They confess their names (p. 43). The Soudan swears they shall 
both be executed the next morning before his dinner. But Floripas 
advises him to detain them as hostages, and to remember his son 
Ferumbras, for whom they might be exchanged. The Soudan, 
finding her counsel good, orders his gaoler Bretomayn to imprison 
them, but to leave them without food (p. 44). At high tide the sen 
filled their deep cells, so that they suffered much from the salt water, 
from their wounds, and from hunger. On the sixth day Floripas, 
who was gathering flowers in her garden, heard them lament. Moved 
to compassion, she asks her governess Maragound to help her in 
getting food for the prisoners. Maragound refuses, and reminds 
Floripas of her father's command. Floripas, thinking of a trick, 
called to her governess to come to a window (p. 45) and see the 
porpoises sporting beneath. As Maragound is looking out, Floripas 
pushes her into the flood. She then asks Bretomayn to let her see 
the prisoners. The gaoler threatened to complain to her father, but 
Floripas, having seized his key-clog, dashed out his brains. She then 
went to tell her father she had surprised the gaoler feeding the 
prisoners (p. 46) and promising to deliver them, wherefore she had 
slain him. The Soudan gives the prisoners into her guard. She 
now proceeded to the prison, asked the prisoners what they wanted, 
and promised to protect them from any harm (p. 47). She let down 
a rope, and with her maidens drew up both, and led them to her 
apartments. There they ate, took a bath, and went to bed. The 
Soudan knew nothing of his prisoners being in Floripas's chamber. 
Meanwhile Charlemagne tells Guy that he must go to the Soudan to 
demand the surrender of Roland and Oliver, and of the relics of 
Rome Naymes of Bavaria represents that a messenger to the Soudan 


(p. 48) would certainly be slain ; and that they ought to be anxious 
not to lose any more besides Roland and Oliver. Then said the 
king : " By God, thou shalt go with Guy." Ogier the Dane remon- 
strates, but is ordered to go too. So are Thierry of Ardane, and Folk 
Baliant, Aleroys, and Miron of Brabant. Bishop Turpin kneels down 
to implore the king's mercy, but he must go too, as well as Bernard 
of Spruwse (p. 49) and Brier of Mountdidier. The knights take leave 
and start. About the same time the Soudan having assembled 
his council, Sortibrance and Brouland (p. 50) advise him to send 
twelve knights, and to bid Charles to give up Ferumbras and to 
withdraw from his country. The knights are despatched ; near 
Mantrible they meet with the Christian messengers. Duke JSTaymes 
enquires whither they intend to go (p. 51). Having heard their 
message, the delegates of Charlemagne cut off their heads, which 
they take with them to present to the Soudan at Agremore. Laban 
was just dining when Naymes delivers his message : " God confound 
Laban and all his Saracens, and save Charles, who commands thee 
to send back his two nephews and to restore the relics " (p. 52). They 
then produce the heads of the Soudan's messengers. The Soudan 
vowed a vow that they should all ten be hanged as soon as he had 
finished his dinner. But Floripas recommended him to put off his 
resolution until a general council of his barons had determined on 
the best way to procure the liberation of Ferumbras. Thereupon the 
Soudan gives the prisoners into her guard. Floripas leads the knights 
into her tower (p. 53), where they were glad to find Roland and 
Oliver. They told each other how they had fared. After washing, they 
dined off venison, bread, and wine. The following day Floripas asks 
Naymes his name, and enquires after Guy of Burgundy, whom she 
had loved for a long time (p. 54), and for whom she would do all 
she could for their benefit, and would be baptized if he would 
agree to love her in return. Naymes tells Guy to take her for his 
wife ; but Guy refuses, as he never will take a wife unless she be 
given him by Charles. But Roland and Oliver persuade him, so 
that he at last consents. Floripas, holding a golden cup of wine 
(p. 55), kissed him, and requested him to drink to her after the fashion 
of her country ; she then would drink to him in return. They all 


make merry, and prepare to assail the Soudan at supper on the follow 
ing day. Meanwhile Lukafer comes to the Soudan and asks leave 
to see the prisoners, in order to know how Floripas guards them. 
Finding the door locked (p. 56), he burst it open with a blow of his 
fist, and told them he was come to speak to them, and to enquire 
after Charlemagne. Duke Naymes answers. Lukafer then asks what 
amusements they have after dinner. Naymes says : " Some joust, 
some sing, some play at chess." " I will teach you a new game," says 
Lukafer (p. 57). With a thread he fastened a needle on a pole and 
put a burning coal upon it. He blew it at Naymes's beard and burnt 
it. Naymes waxed wroth, and snatching a burning brand from the 
fire he smites at Lukafer, and throws him into the fire, where he was 
burnt to charcoal. Floripas applauds this, but points out their 
danger, and advises them to arm. At supper time she goes to her 
father (p. 58). As they were sitting at table, the twelve peers 
rushed in and slew all whom they met. Laban, pursued by Oliver, 
jumps out of a window on to the sea-shore and escaped without 
injury. They killed all in the castle, and then drew up the bridges 
and shut the gates. Laban vowed a vow that he would hang them 
all and 'burn his daughter. He sent to Mantrible for troops (p. 59) 
and engines and besieged Agremore. Floripas recommends the peers 
to enjoy themselves. In the morning the Soudan attacks the castle, 
but is repulsed (p. 60). He accuses his gods of sleepiness and shakes 
them to rouse them out of sleep. Brouland tells him, as the castle is 
strong and well stored with provisions, the peers will hold it very 
long ; but if he would send orders to Alagolofer, the bridge-keeper 
at Mantrible, not to allow any one to pass without leave (p. 61), they 
would get no assistance from Charles and die from hunger. Espiard, 
the Soudan's messenger, is despatched to Mantrible, and commands 
the giant not to suffer any one to pass the bridge (p. 62). Alagolofer 
drew four and twenty chains across the bridge. Meanwhile the 
Soudan assaults the castle again, but the twelve peers slew three 
hundred Saracens (p. 63). Laban threatens to hang them, and 
utters imprecations against Floripas, who returns them. He then 
calls for Mavon, his engineer, and orders him to direct a mangonel 
against the walls. Mavon knocked down a piece of the battlements. 


Roland and Oliver lament; they are comforted by Floripas (p. 64). 
Guy kills Marsedage, the king of Barbary, by throwing a dart at 
him. The Saracens stop the attack to bury Marsedage, and bewail 
him seven nights and seven days. Then the Soudan more closely 
blockades the castle (p. 65). The provisions being exhausted, 
Eoland complains of Charles's forgetfulness ; but Floripas cheers him 
up, saying she possessed a magic girdle, which was a talisman against 
hunger and thirst for those who wore it. They all successively put 
it on, and felt as if they had feasted (p. 66). Laban wondered at 
their endurance, but at last remembering the girdle, he induced 
Mapin to attempt to steal it at night. Mapin entered the chamber 
of Floripas (p. 67) through a chimney. He finds the girdle and puts 
it on, but Floripas perceives him and cries out. Eoland hurries to 
her assistance, cuts off Mapin's head, and throws him out through 
the window into the sea without noticing the girdle. Floripas, seeing 
her girdle lost, is much grieved ; Roland comforts her. They agree 
to attempt a sally to obtain food (p. 68). In the morning Naymes 
and Ogier remain in the castle, while the others start and surprise 
the Saracens sleeping in their huts. They slew three hundred, and 
carried off as much food as they could bear (p. 69). The Soudan is 
enraged and is going to burn his gods, but, appeased by his wise men, 
he sacrifices again, and is assoiled by the priests. Laban holds 
council (p. 70). A new assault begins, but so many of the assailants 
were slain by the showers of stones hurled down by the peers that 
the ditches are filled with dead bodies. The Saracens retire. But 
soon a second attack ensues. There being no stones, Floripas gave 
them her father's silver and gold to cast amongst the assailants. The 
Soudan in alarm for his treasure gives up the assault (p. 71). He is 
enraged with his gods, and smites Mahound so that he fell on his 
face ; but the priests induce him to kneel down and ask forgiveness 
(p. 72). Meanwhile Roland exhorted Richard of Normandy to go 
on a message to Charles, that he might come to their rescue. They 
all would, the following morning before day-break, make an attack 
on the Saracens, and meanwhile he should steal off in the darkness. 
In the morning they sally out. Floripas and her maidens draw up 
the bridges after them. Richard went off towards Mantrible (p. 73). 


The others slay many Saracens ; but Guy, overpowered by the 
Babylonians, is taken prisoner. Laban asks his name. Guy tells 
him. He is to be hanged. Three hundred Saracens crowding near 
the gate of the castle, attempted to prevent the other peers from 
entering. A fearful struggle begins (p. 74), in which Sir Bryer is 
killed. At last the Saracens take to flight. The peers retire inside 
the castle, taking the corpse of Bryer with them. Floripas enquires 
after Guy, and on hearing of his capture, begins to lament despair- 
ingly. Eoland promises to rescue Guy (p. 75). On the following 
morning Laban orders Sir Tamper to erect a gallows before the 
castle, where Floripas could see it. Guy is led bound. Roland 
calls his companions to arms. They rush forth (p. 76). Oliver 
cuts down Sir Tamper, Roland kills a king of India, takes his sword 
and horse, and gives them to Guy, having unbound him. They slay 
many Saracens, and put the rest to flight. Retiring towards the 
castle, they see Admiral Costroye, and the Soudan's standard-bearer, 
escorting a great convoy, destined for the sultan, across a field near 
the high road (p. 77). Roland calls to them to share the provisions 
with them. Costroye refuses, and is slain by Roland. Oliver kills 
the standard-bearer, and the convoy is conveyed into the castle (p. 78). 
Floripas thanks Roland for bringing back Sir Guy, and proposes 
that he shall choose himself a mistress from amongst her maidens. 
But Roland refuses to take any that is not a Christian. The Soudan, 
on hearing such bad news, again defies his gods, and threatens to 
throw them into the flames (p. 79). But bishop Cramadas kneels 
before him and appeases him. The Soudan makes an offering of a 
thousand besants to his gods. When Richard arrived as far as 
Mantrible, he found the bridge barred by twenty-four chains, and 
Alagolofer standing before it. Determined not to leave his errand 
unperformed, he knelt down and commended himself to God. A 
hind appears (p. 80) and swims across the river ; Richard follows 
her, and passing over in safety, hurries on to Charlemagne. Mean- 
while Genelyn, the traitor, had advised Charles to retire to France, 
because the twelve peers were all slain. The king believed him, and 
marched homeward, lamenting for his peers. Richard overtakes 
him. and is recognized by Charles, who asks him about the others. 


Richard tells the king how they are besieged within the castle of 
Agremore, and are waiting for his assistance. Charles, vowing 
vengeance on Genelyn (p. 81), turned and marched to Agremore. 
Richard informed him of the giant who kept the bridge, and how 
he had passed the river by a miracle. He proposed a plan that 
twelve knights, disguised as merchants, with their arms hidden 
under their clothes, should pay the toll, and the bridge being let 
down, they should blow a horn as a signal for the others to approach. 
They start and arrive at Mantrible (p. 82). Alagolofer asks whither 
they are going. Richard says they are merchants on their way to 
the Soudan, and they are willing to pay the toll. Alagolofer refuses 
to let them pass, and tells them about the ten knights, who had 
passed there and done so much mischief to the Soudan ; therefore 
he will arrest them all. Sir Focard draws his sword and smites at 
him, Richard blows his horn, and Charles advances (p. 83). Alago- 
lofer fights them with a great oak club. Richard seizes a bar of brass 
and knocks him down. Four men get hold of him and throw him 
into the river. They loosened the chains; but the Saracens assembling 
on the walls of the city, many Christians were slain. Alagolofer's 
wife, Barrock the giantess, comes on with her scythe and mows 
down all whom she meets. Charles dashes out her brains (p. 84), 
and with fifteen knights enters the outer gate of the town, thinking 
his army would follow him. But the gate was instantly closed upon 
him, and his men came too late. Charles was in great danger ; but 
Genelyn, seeing him shut in, exclaimed that the king and the twelve 
peers were dead, and proposed to retire, as he wished to be king 
himself. They were going to return, but Ferumbras (p. 85) calls 
him a traitor ; he rallies the French, and with his axe bursts open 
the gate. He chased the Saracens and rescued the king. Mantrible 
is taken with all its engines and treasures. Richard found two 
children of seven months old (p. 86), and four feet high. They 
were sons of Barrock, begotten by Astragot. Charles caused them 
to be baptized, and called the one Roland and the other Oliver. But 
they soon died for want of their mother's milk The king appoints 
Richard governor of the city, and hurries on to Agremore with his 
army and with Ferumbras (p. 87). Laban, being told by a spy 


that his city was taken and the bridge-ward killed, swears to avenge 
him. He calls a council, and charges his barons to take Charles 
alive that he might flay him. Charles approaches. Floripas first 
recognizes the banner of France and tells the others (p. 88). Roland 
and all his companions sally forth to meet Charlemagne. Laban 
draws up all his people in battle-order. The French make a great 
slaughter of the Saracens. Charles encounters the Soudan ; he 
unhorses him, and would have cut off his head, but for Ferumbras, 
who requested that his father might be baptized. The Saracens, 
seeing Laban a prisoner, fly; but the Christians pursue them. 
Three hundred escaped to Belmarine. Charles leads Laban to 
Agremore. Floripas welcomes her father (p. 89), but he is enraged 
at seeing her. She then bids Charlemagne welcome, and presents 
the holy relics to him. Charles kisses them, and says a prayer ; he 
then thanks Floripas for her assistance to his knights, and for having 
preserved the precious relics. He orders Turpin to prepare a vessel 
wherein to baptize the Soudan, and to wash off his sin in the water 
(p. 90). Turpin leads Laban to the font, but the Soudan strikes at 
him, spits on the vessel, utters invectives against all Christians, and 
curses Ferumbras. Charles commands Naymes to cut off his head. 
He is executed ; his soul goes to hell, there to dance with devils. 
Floripas was baptized with all her maidens, and was wedded to Guy. 
Charles divided Spain between Guy and Ferumbras (p. 91), and charges 
Sir Bryer of Bretayne to take care of the relics, and to bring all his 
treasure to Paris. After taking leave of Guy and Floripas, Charles 
sails to Monpilier, where he thanks God for the victory (p. 92), and 
for the relics. He presents the cross to Paris, the crown to St. Denis, 
the three nails to Boulogne. Charles well remembered the treachery 
of Genelyn, and ordered him to be drawn and hanged at Montfaucon 
in Paris (p. 93). 

Eomaunce of tfje Sofotione of Bafcglone 
anfc of Jtrumbras jjts <Sone tofjo 
Conquered i&ome : 

From the unique MS. of the late Sir Thos. Phillipps. 

/""NJ Od in glorye of myghteste * moost, 
a That al thinge made in sapience 

I .By ver_tue of woorde and holy goost, 

Gyvinge to man grete excellence, 

V-xl And alle, fat is in erthe, wroght 

Subiecte to man and man to the, 

That he shoulde with herte and thought 

To loue and serve, and nooii) but the : 

For }yfe man kepte thy commaundemente 

In al thinge and loued the welle 

And hadde synnede in his entente, 

Than) shulde he fully thy grace fele ; 

But for the offences to God I-doow? 

Many vengeaunces haue be-falle. 

Where-of I wole you) telle of oon), 

It were to mocfi. to telle of alle. 

While fat Eome was in excellence 

Of alle Realmes in dignite, 

And howe it felle for his offence, 

Listinythe a while and ye shal see, 

Howe it was wonen) and brente 

Of a Sowdon), that heathen) was, 

And for synne howe it was shente ; 

As Kinge Lowes witnessith fat cas, 

1 Read : myglites 2 MS. doo 


1 God has ordained 
all things wisely. 

He has subjected 
the earth to man, 
and man to God. 

The man who 
keeps His com- 
mandments and 
loves Him well, 




will feel His 


But many who 

offended Him 

have felt His 


I will tell you of 

one ; it would 

take too long to 

tell of all. 

Listen to me, and 
ye shall hear how 
Rome, the former 
mistress of all 
nations, came to 
fall by its sins, 

and was destroyed 
by a heathen 

King Lewis has 
borne witness to 


that story, which, 
written in Ro- 
mance and found 
in very old chro- 
nicles at St Denys 
in France, relates 

how Laban, the 
king of Babylon, 
who was born at 
Ascalon, con- 
quered a great 
part of Christen- 

He was holding 
his court in the 
city of Agremore, 
on the river 

with 12 kings and 
li amirals, and 
many worthy 
barons and 

[If 1, bk] 

when, in the time 
between March 
and May, 

he went to the 

in a wood near 
the sea. 

As it is wryten in Romaunce 

And founden in bokes of Aiitiquyte 

At Seinte Denyse Abbey in Fraunc[e], 1 

There as Cronycles remembrede be, 28 

Howe Laban, the kinge of hie degre, 

And syr> and SowdorD of hie Babilon), 

Conquerede grete parte of Christiante, 

That was born in Askalori). 32 

And in the Cite of Agremare 2 

Vppon the Rivere of Flagote 

At pat tyme he soiorned ther* 2 

Fulle roially, wel I wote, 36 

With kinges xij and Admyralles xiiij, 

With many a Baron & Kni3tis ful boold, 

That roialle were and semly to sene ; 

Here worpynesse al may not be told. 40 

Hit bifelle by-twyxte March and Maye, 

Whan kynde corage begynneth to pryke, 

Whan ffritft and felde wexen gaye, 

And every wight desirith his like, 44 

Whan lovers slepen withe opyn y^e, 

As Nightyngalis on grene tre, 

And sore desire pat thai cowde ilye, 

That thay myghte withe here louere be : 48 

This worthy Sowdon in this seson 

Shope him to grene woode to goon, 

To chase the Bore or the Veneson, 

The Wolfe, the Bere and the Bawson. 52 

He roode tho vppon a fforeste stronde 

With grete rowte and roialte, 

The fairest, pat was in alle pat londe, 

With Alanntes, Lywmeris and Racches free. 56 

His huntes to chace he cowmaunde, 

Here Bugles boldely for to blowe, 

To fere the beestis in pat launde. 

1 leaf worn. 2 Sec the note. 


The Sowdon woxe wery I-nowe ; 

He rested him vndere an holme tre 

Sittynge vppon a grene sete 

Seynge a Dronionde com sailyDg in J? e see 

Anone he charged to bekyn him vriih honde 

To here of him tidinges newe. 

The maister sende a man to londe, 

Of diuers langages was gode and trewe, 

And saide "lorde, this Dromonde 1 

Fro Babyloyne comen is, 

That was worjje thousande poundis, 

As 2 it mete with shrewes I-wis, 

Charged with perle and precious stones 

And riche pelure and spicerye, 

With oyle and bras qweynte for the nones 

To presente yow, my lorde worthy. 

A drift of wedir 5 vs droffe to Rome, 

The Romaynes robbed vs anone ; 

Of vs thai slowgh ful many one. 

With sorwe and care we be bygone. 

Whereof, lorde, remedy e 

Ye ordeyne by youre Barons boolde, 

To wreke the of this vilane ; 

Or certes oure blis is coolde." 

The Soudon hirynge this tyjringe, 

With egre chere he made a vowe 

To Mahounde and to Appolyne, 

That thai shulde by it dere I-nowe, 

Er that he wente fro theyme. 3 

" Where be ye, my kinges boolde, 

My Barons and my Admyral ? 

Thes tidinges make myn herte coolde, 

But I be venged, dyen I shalle. 

Sire Ferumbras, my sone so dere, 

Ye muste me comforte in this case ; 

1 See the note. 2 or Ar 3 See the note. 

B 2 

60 Being weary with 
hunting, he sat 
down under a 
holm tree, and, 

seeing a dromond 
sailing on the sea, 
he charged one to 
enquire for news 
concerning the 

The interpreter of 
the vessel being 
sent ashore, in- 
formed the 
soudan, that this 
freighted at 


72 with a cargo of 
rich furs, 
spices, oil, brass 
and pearls, 
intended as a 
present to the 
soudan, had been 
driven by stress 
of weather to 
Rome, where they 
had been robbed 
by the Romans. 






[leaf 3] 
Therefore he 
solicited that the 
soudan would take 
revenge on those 
who had done 
such villainy 
to him. 
The soudan, 
hearing these 
tidings, made a 
vow to Mahound 
and to Apolyn, 
that they should 
dearly pay for it. 

' Ferumbras, my 
son,' he said, 
'and my daughter 
Floripas, ye must 


be my comfort 
in this case. 

Order Sorti- 

brance, my 

counsellor, to be 

called for, 

and my chancellor 


and Espiard my 
that he may go to 
Africa and to 
Asia and to 
all the princes, 
who owe me 
and command 
them hastily to 
assemble with 
shield and lance 
at Agremore." 

In a short time 
100,000 men had 

On the advice of 
Lukafer, king of 

the souclan also 
brought together 
700 sail and a 

[leaf 4] 
dromond for 
himself, for Fe- 
rumbras of Alex- 
andrie, for the 

Asiatic king of 
< 'humidor and for 

There were two 
masters in that 
vessel, and two 
idols placed on 
the main top, 
with round maces, 
therewith to 
menace the 
The sails of red 
eeiidal-silk were 

My ioye is alle in the nowe here 

And in my Doghter Dame Florypas. 96 

Sortybraunce, my Counselere, 

Lete clepe him forthe to counsaile me, 

And Oliborne, my Chauncelere 

And noble Clerke of hie degre, 100 

And Espiarde, my messangere, 

To goon to Assye and to Aufrike, 

To kinges, princes f err* and ner 1 , 

Barons, Admyralls and Dukes frike, 104 

Comaundinge hem vppoii her legeaunce 

To come in al hast vnto me, 

Wei Armed with shelde and launse, 

To Egremoure Jxm riche Cite." 108 

In shorte tyme this message was wroghte 

An hundred thouusande on a rowte 

That robbery was righte dere boght, 

Was never none derrer withoutera donate. 112 

The kinge of Baldas, sir Lukafer', 

Of Aufryke lorde and governoure, 

Spake to the Sowdon, that men myghte here, 

And saide " sir, for thyn honour*, 116 

Do sende for shippes both fer 1 and nere." 

Carrikes, Galeis and shippes shene, 

vij hundred were gadered al in fere 

And a Dromonde for the Sowden kene. 1 20 

Sir Eerumbras of Alisaundre 

In the Dromonde with him was, 

Of Assy the kinge of Chaunder 1 , 

And his faire doghter Eloripas. 124 

Two maistres were in the Dromounde, 

Two goddes on. hye seten thore 

In the maister toppe, withe macis rounde, 

To manace with the Cristen lore. 128 

The sailes were of rede Sendelle, 

Embrowdred with riche araye, 


With beestes and breddcs every dele, 

That was right curious and gave ; 

The Armes displaied of Laban 

Of Asure and foure lions of goolde. 

Of Babiloyne the riche Sowdon, 

Moost myghty man he was of moolde, 

He made a vowe to Termagaunte, 

Whan Eome were distroied & hade myschauwce, 

He woolde turne ayen erraunte 

And distroye Charles the kinge of Fraunce. 

Forth thai sailed on the flode, 

Tille thai come to the haven of Kome : 

The wynde hern served, it was ful goode. 

Ther londed many a grymlye gome. 

Thai brente and slowen, J?at Cristen were, 

Town, Abbey and holy chirche. 

The hethen hade such power there, 

That moche woo gan thai there wirch. 

Tidinggis came to Eome anone 

Unto the Pope, that ]?* tyme was, 

That the hejjen came to bren and slone. 

This was to hem a sory cas. 

He lete cal his counsaile to-geder 

To wete, what was beste to don. 

Anone as thai were come Jjeder*, 

He asked of hem al ful sone : 

"Lordinges, it is vnknowne 1 to you, 

That this cursed hathen Sowdon 

13re?myth and stroyeth cure pepul nowe, 

Alive he leveth vnneth not one. 

Seint Petir be oure governoure 

And save this worthi Cite of Rome, 

And Seinte Poule be oure gydoure 

From this cursed hethen houne 2 ! " 

Ifrej he bispake him than, 

1 See the note. 2 looks like hound. 

richly em- 
broidered with 
132 figures of animals 
and birds. 








Four golden lions, 
the arms of 
the soudan of 
Babylon, were 
also displayed 
Laban made a 
vow to Terma- 
gant, to destroy 
Rome, and after 
that Charle- 

Having disem- 
barked in the 
haven of Rome, 

they slew all 
Christians, and 
burned towns, 
abbeys and 

The Pope of 
Rome, hearing of 
the heathens 
laying waste the 
whole country, 

assembled his 




Jeffrez, a senator 


of Rome, advised Of Rome he was a Senatoure, 

that worthy men 

should be sent to And saide " senditn some worthy man 

Charles of Douce 

France to implore To Charles klllgG of llje hoilOUIG. 168 

his assistance. TT , , *. 

He wolde you helpe with al his mygnte, 
That noble kinge of Dowse Fraunce." 
But Duke savariz, " Certes " quod Savaris " bat weren no rigfrte. 

thinking this to . T 

be a wretched It were right a foule myschaunce, 172 

piece of timidity, ,1 i 

lo sende to bat worthy kinge. 
as they had not We have oure hedes yet al hole, 

tried anything for 

themselves, Oure sheldes be not broke no-thinge, 

Hawberke, spere, ner poleyne, ner pole. 176 

Where-of shul we playn to him, 

That no thinge yet have assaide 1 

Mecti uylanye we myght wynne, 

That for noght were so sone afrayed. 180 

asked for 10,000 Ten thousande men delyuere me ty te 

men to be put 

under his Tomorue next in-to the feelde, 

And I shall prove with al my myghte 

To breke there bothe spere and sheldc." 184 

Vnto the Senatours it semed welle, 

His counsaile goode and honurable. 

This worthi Duke was armed in stele 

In armes goode and profitable ; 188 

He bare a Chek of goulis clere, 

An Egle of goolde abrode displayed. 

With him many a bolde Bachelere 
The next morning Tho spake Savarvj with" wordes on hve 192 

the duke ad- J 

dressed his men, And saide " my felowcs alle, 

This daie prove you men worthy, 

And faire you al shal befalle. 

Thenke yat Criste is more myghty 196 

Than here fals goddis alle ; 

And he shal geve vs the victorie, 

And foule shal hem this day bifalle." 
and directed them Forth than rode bat faire Ooste 200 

to the Boudan's 

With right goode chere and ran don, 


Tille than come fill ny$e the cooste. 

Of the Sowdons Pavylon 

Eerumbras was of hem ware 

And sprange out as a sparkil of glede ; 

Of Armes bright a sheelde he bare, 

A Doughty man he was of dede. 

xv thousande came oute there 

With him at J?at same tyde, 

Ayen the Romaynes for to were, 

With bobaunce, booste and grete pride. 

The stoure was stronge, enduryng 1 longe : 

The Romaynes hade there the feelde ; 

The Sarysyns thai slough" amonge, 

Ten thousand and mo with spere and sheelde. 

Sauariz was wise and ware 

And drowe towards ]?at Citee. 

His baner displaied with" him he bare 

To releve with his meyne. 

The Pope with his Senatours 

Thanked god fat tyme of glorie, 

That gafe hem j)at day grete honours, 

Of hethen that dai to have the victorie. 

Lukafere, kinge of Baldas, 

The countrey hade serchid and sought, 

Ten thousande maidyns faire of face 

Vnto the Sowdan hath he broghte. 

The Sowdon commanded hem anone, 

That thai shulde al be slayn. 

Martires thai were euerychon, 

And therof were thai al ful fayne. 

He saide " my peple nowe ne shalle 

With hem noughte defouled be, 

But I wole distroie ouer all 

The sede over alle Cristiante." 

Tho spake lukefere the kinge, 

That hethen hounde Baldas, 

pavilion near the 

[leaf 6] 

204 Ferumbras, that 
doughty warrior, 
becoming aware 
of them, led 

208 15,000 men 
against the 


10,000 and more 
of the Saracens 
2 1 D were slain, and 
the Romans, 
though victorious, 
were led back to 
Rome by the 
cautious Savaris. 

220 The Pope thanked 
God for the 

224 LukaferofBaldas 
having scoured 
the country, 

brought 10,000 
maidens to the 
soudan, who 


ordered them to 
be slain, 

232 saying, he would 
not have his 
people polluted 
by them, and he 
would destroy 
every Christian 


Lukafer said to 
the soudan : 


"Grant me thy 

daughter and I 

will bring tiiee 

Laban assented; 

but Flovipas said, 

she would only 

consent to be his 

[leaf 7] 

when he had 

taken Charles and 

the douzepeers. 

The next morning 

the soudan 

ordered Lukafer 

to assault the 

city with 30,000 

The Saracens, 

finding the ditches 

too deep, cannot 

pass, and are 

obliged to return. 

And saide " Sir Sowdan, graunte me one thinge, 

Thi doghter Dame Floripas. 

The kinge of Fraunce I shal the bringe 240 

And the xij dosipers alle in fere." 

The Sowdan saide in J>at tokenyng*, 

" I gmunte the here, that is so dere." 

iho sayde Floripe "sire, noon haste, 244 

He hath note done as he hath saide. 

I trowe, he speketh these wordes in waste, 

He wole make bute an easy brayde. 

Whan he bryngith home Charles the kinge 248 

And the xij dosipers alle, 

I graunte to be his derlynge 

What so evere therof by-falle. 

Than on the morowe the Sowdan 252 

Callid to him Lukafer 1 of Baldas, 

To assaile the Cite anone : 

" And loke thou tary not in this cas ! 

Thritty thousande of my menie, 256 

Of Gallopes, Ethiopes and Aufricanes, 

Take hem to the walles with the. 

Betitfc down wallis, towris and stones." 

Lukafer* blewe his clarion 260 

To Assemble the Sarasyns fat tide, 

Where-of thai knewe right welle the soune, 

Thai made hem redy for to ride, 

But whan thai come to the yate, 264 

The Dikes were so develye depe, 

Thai helde hem selfe Chek-mate ; 


Ouer cowde thai nothir goo nor crepe. 

Lukafer* in al the haste 268 

Turned to the Sowdan agayn 

And saide " sir, it is alle in waste, 

We laboure nowe alle in vayne. 

To depe and brode the Dikes bene, 272 

The Towres so stronge be witli alle, 


That by Mahounde I can note seen, 

How that we shulde wyne ther to the walle." 

Who was woode but the Sowdon 1 

He reneyed his goddis alle. 

He clepede his Engynowr sir mavone, 

To counsaile he did him faste calle. 

He tolde him the case of J?at myschefe, 

How it stode at that ilke tyde. 

Mavon Gafe him counsel in breefe 

To fille the Dikes J?at were depe. 1 

Every man to woode shal goon, 

Fagotis to hewe and faste bynde, 

And fille the Dikes faste anoon 

With alle. that we may ther fynde. 

" Gramercy, Mavon," quod. Laban than, 

" Mahoundis benysone thou shalt haue, 

Of alle myn Ooste the wiseste man, 

With counsaile men for to saue. 

Alle this was done the seconde daye, 

Men myght go even to the walle ; 

On every party the ooste laye, 

Thai made assaite 2 then generalle. 

The Eomaynes ronnen to the toures, 

Thai were in ful grete dowte ; 

Thai hade many sharpe shoures, 

Thai were assailed sore a-bowte. 

Wifis and maidyns stones thai bare 

To the walles than ful faste, 

Thai were in grete drede and care ; 

The men over the wallis did caste. 

Thai slowen many a Sarasyn, 

x thousands 5 pepul of hem and moo. 

The daie passed to the fyne, 

The hethen withdrowe hem tho. 

Whan these tidinges came to laban, 

1 Head ' wide ' 8 sic. ? assaute. 3 MS. M 




The soudan calls 
for his engineer 

who advised him 
to fill the ditch 

with fagots. 

288 I*ban thanks his 
wise engineer. 

[leaf 8] 

292 The following 
day, the ditch 
being filled with 
fagots, the city 

from all quarters. 
296 The Romans ran 
to the towers, and 

a sharp conflict 



Women and 
maidens carried 
stones which the 

men threw over 
the walls. . 

10,000 Saracens 
were slain and 

the henthcns 

obliged to 
308 withdraw. 



Laban chides his 
gods and nearly 
grows mad with 

But Lukafer told 
him that, having 
espied that 

Savaris would, 
the following day, 
come out again to 
fight with than, 
lie would have a 
banner made 
exactly like his, 
which when 
Savaris was much 
engaged in the 
battle, he would 
tin fold and enter 

And so it turned 

the Romans mis- 
taking him for 
Savaris, returning 
from his sally, 

he entered the 
main tower, 
[leaf 9] 

and slew all 

Savaris becoming 
aware of the arti- 
fice of the enemy, 

and seeing out of 
10,000 Romans 
no more than 
seventy-two left, 

turned back, but 
found the gate 

His goddes he gan chide. 

He waxe both blake, pale and wan, 

He was ny^e woode J)at same tyde. 

Tho Lukafer comfortede him welle 

And saide " sir, be not dismayed, 

For I have aspied everydele, 

Howe thai shalle alle be betrayede. 

Sauariz wole to morowe with us fighte, 

His baner knowe I f ul welle ; 

I shal have an othere, I you) plighte, 

Like to this every dele. 

Whan he is nioste besy in bataile, 

Than wole I with banere displaiede 

Eide in to Eome without faile, 

Thus shal thai al be betrayede. 

The Sowdan was glad of this tidinge, 

Hopinge it shulde be so ; 

And even as it was in purposynge, 

Eight so was it aftir I-do. 

Wenynge it hade be Sauarye, 

Eelevinge fro the hethen stour*, 

Wenynge doth ofte harme wMouto lye, 

He entred to the maister Toure. 

The firste warde thus tliay wo^ne 

By this fals contrevede engyne. 

Thus was moche sorowe bygon, 

Thai slough all, that were ther-Inne. 

Whan Sauariz saugh this discomfitur 1 

Of the Eomaynes in that tyme, 

And howe harde than was here aventur*, 

Of sorowe fat myghte he ryme 

Of x thousande men lefte no moo 

But sexty men and twelfe, 

And whan he sawe this myschief tho, 

He turned homewarde agayn him selue. 

By than he foundo the gate shite 











With Sarisyns, that hade it wone ; 

And Estragot with him he inette 

With bores hede, blake and donne. 

For as a bore an hede hadde 348 

And a grete mace stronge as stele. 

He smote Sauaryz as he were madde, and was slain by 

.. .. Estragot, a black 

That dede to grounde he telle. giant of Ethiopia. 

This Astrogot of Ethiop, 352 

He was a kinge of grete strength ; 

Ther was none suche in Europe 

So stronge and so longe in length. 

I trowe, he were a develes sone, 356 

Of Belsabubbis lyne, 

For ever he was thereto I- wone, 

To do Cristen men grete pyne. 

Whan tidinggis came to the [P]ope, 360 After the death of 

Savaris, the Pope 

That Duke Sauaryz was dede slayn, 

Than to woo turned alle his hope ; 

He dide calle than to counsaile summoned his 

Alle the Senatouris of Rome, 364 c< 

What pinge }>at myght hem most availe, 

And what were beste to done. 

Tho by-spake a worthy man of counsaile, 

An Erille of the Senatouris : 368 Aneariofthe 

_ senatours sug- 

" The best counsaile, j?at I can ges ted the neces- 

sity of dispatch- 
ing messengers to 

Sending vnto Charts the kinge* 

Certifiynge him by your myssangeris 

The myschief J>at ye are Inne, 372 

That he come with his Dosyperys 

their deliverance. 

To reskue Cristiante fro this hefen." [leafioj 

All thai assentede anone therto ; r j hey an assented. 

The le^res were made in haste. 376 
Thre messageres we ordeyn 2 therto, Three messei,- 

gers, with letters 

That went forthe at the laste. written in haste, 

1 Tills line in a much later hand. 2 Read: were ordeyncd 



left the city by a At a posteme thai wente oute 

postern at mid- 

night, and passed Pryvely aboute mydnyglit, 

the enemy's camp , , , . 

without being And passed through alle the route. 

noticed by any r\ i* i-j. 

W ig ht . U* hem was war no wignt. 

Vt let we nowe the messangeris goon, 

And speke we of Laban, 384 

Howe he dide saile the Cite anooii, 

Laban com- And commaundid, bat every man 

mended every 

man to throw Shulde withe Pikevs or with bille 

pikes and bills 

over the waiis, to The Wallis over throwe, 388 

kill the Romans. 

That he myght the Komaynes kille, 
Playnly on a rowe, 
He ordered the By water he ordeynede the shippes goon, 

ships to go up the 

water, with their The boohs Downden to the maste, 392 

boats bound to ,, . . i , r> -t , ',11 

the mast, that That thai myght fight with hem anoon, 
mTselomS 1 Honde of honde, J?at was here caste. 
Near the tower To the Toure a bastile stode, 

there stood a 

bastile which An engyne was I-throwe 396 

formed a principal ~ _ , 

protection to the That was to the Cite ful goode 

itTv'as laid low by And brake down towres both hie and lowe. 

STi "Sne. Tho sorowede alle the Citesyns 

And were ful hevy than. 400 

Laban, growing Xho wox prowde the Sarasyns, 

proud, summoned 

the Romans to And than bispake sire laban 


And saide " yolde youe here to me, 
Ye may not longe endure, 404 

Or ellis shall ye al slayn be, 
By mahouude I you ensure." 
instead of an A Romayne drife a darte him to 

answer, a Roman 

hmied a dart at And smote him on the breste plate, 408 

his breast-plate, -,,,-,, , , , 

but his hauberk J> e hadde his hawberke lasted tho, 

shielded him. _ 111 , , 

Mahounde had come to late. 
The soudan, more Tho was the Sowdon more ban wod, 

than mad, 

chared Fcrum- He cried to Ferumbras, 412 

bras to destroy 

them ail, " For Mahoundcs loue, fat is so good, 

Destroye vp bothe man and place. 



Spare no thinge that is alyve, 
Hows, Toure ner Walle, 
Beest, ner man, Childe nere Wife, 
Erenne, slo and distroye alle." 
Tho Ferumbras ordeynede an one 
To bende the Engynes to the town 
And bete down both Toure and stoon. 
He cleped forth Fortibraunce and Mavon 
And saide " be youre Engynes goode ? 
Shewe forth here nowe your crafte 
For Mahoundis love, ]?at gevith man foode, 
That ther be no Toure lafte." 
Tho the grete gloton Estagote 1 
With his niyghty mace sware 
On the Gatis of Rome he smote 
And brake hem alle on thre thare. 
In he entrid at the Gate 
The Porte-Colis on him thai lete fallc. 
He wende, he hade come to late, 
It smote him through herte, lyuer and galle. 
He lai cryande at the grounde 
Like a develle of Helle ; 
Through the Cite wente the sowne, 
So lowde than gan he yelle. 
Gladde were al the Romaynes, 
That he was take in the trappe, 
And sorye were al the Sarsyns 
Of Jjat myschevos happe. 
Sory was the Soudon than 
And Ferumbras and Lukafer'. 
Thai drowe hem tille her tentes than, 
Thai left him ligginge there. 
Mahounde toke his soule to him 
And broght it to his blis. 
He loued him wel and al his kyn, 
1 Estragote 

416 [leaf 11 J 


and enjoined 
Fortibrance and 
Mavon to direct 
Act . their engines 
4 A* against the walls. 

The great glutton 
Estragot, with his 
4 Jo heavy mace, 

smote on the 
gates and brake 
them in pieces. 

But as he was 
entering one of 
432 the gates, they lot 
the portcullis full, 
which crushed 
him to the 

where he lay 
crying like a 
436 dovil. 

The Romans were 
glad, but the 
440 Saracens grieved. 


They withdrew to 
their tents, leav- 
ing behind the 
corpse of Estra- 
got, whose soul 
went np to 
448 Mahound. 



The Pope called 
all his people to 
St. Peter's, 

and proposed to 

[leaf 121 

to attempt a sally 
with 20,000 men, 
to attack the 
enemy before day- 
break within their 

and to leave 

10,000 for 

the guard of the 


The senators 

In the morning 

the Pope dis- 
played the banner 
of Rome, 

and after a prayer 
for the preserva- 
tion of the city, 

they marched out. 

But Ferumbras, 
going his rounds, 

Of fat myghte he not mys. 
Anone the [P]ope dide somon alle ; 
The peple of the Cite came, 452 

To Seinte Petris he dide hem calle, 
And thidere came every man. 
He saide on hie " my Children dere, 
Ye wote wel, ho we it is ; 456 

Ayenst the Sarisyns, fat nowe be here, 
We niowe not loDge endure I-wis. 
Thay brekene oure walles, oure Toures alle 
With caste of his Engyne. 460 

Therefore here amonge you) alle 
Ye shalle here counsaile myne. 
Thai bene withdrawe to here Oost, 1 
And on-armede thay ben alle. 464 

Therfore, me thenketh, is beste 
To-morowe erly on hem to falle. 
We have xxx ti thousande men ; 

Twenty thousande shal go witfi. me, 468 

And in this Cite leve ten 
To governe the comynalte." 
The Senatouris assentede sone 

And saide, beter myghte no man seyne. 472 

On the morowe this was it done 2 ; 
God bringe hem wele home agayne. 
The Pope did display than 

The hie baner of Rome, 476 

And he assoiled every mafl 
Through gracious god in Dome. 
He praide of helpe and socour* 

Seinte Petir and Poule also 480 

And oure lady, fat swete floure, 
To saue the Cite of Rome from woo. 
Forth thai riden towarde the Oost. 
Ferumbras romede a-boute ; 484 

1 Read: reste 2 See the note. 



He saw the Eomaynes comen by the Cost, 1 

Thereof he hade grete dowte. 

He blewe an home, of bras it was ; 

The Sarsyns be-gon to wake. 488 

" Arise vp " he saide in aras, 2 

" We bene elles alle I-take, 

And Armes anone, every wight, 

To horse with spere and shelde ! 492 

Ye may se here a ferefuH sighte 

Of oure enemyes in the felde. 

Astopars, 3 goo ye biforne vs, 

For ye be men of myghte ; 496 

Ethiopes, Assayne^ and Askalous, 

Go nexte afore my sighte. 

My Fadir and I with Babyloynes, 

Ho 4 shal kepe the rerewarde. 500 

King Lukafer 1 with Baldeseynes, 

To venge alle, shalle have the Fowarde." 

The Eomaynes aspied, Jjat thai were ware 

Of here comynge than, 504 

And therfore hade thay moche care. 

Natheles on hem thai gon 

Seinte Petir be here socoure ! 

And laiden on side, bake and bon. 508 

There bigan a sturdy shoure 

Sire 5 Ferumbras of Alisaundre oon, 6 

That bolde man was in dede, 

Vppon a steede Cassaundre gaye, 512 

He roode in riche Weede. 

Sire Bryer of Poyle a Romayne to fraye 

He bare through with" a spere, 

Dede to the grounde ther he Ian 516 

Might he no more hem dere ! 

discovered their 

the alarm, 

and drew up his 

[leaf IS] 

There began a 
hard struggle. 

Ferumbras sle\y 
Sir Bryer of 

1 MS. Oost corrected to Cost. 
* See the note. * Head : We 

6 See the note. 

3 Head : a ras. 
5 MS. Berumbras. 


That sawe Huberte, a worthy man, 

Howe Briere was I-slayn, 

Per umbras to qwite than 520 

To him he rode ful even. 

With a spere vppone his shelde fan 

Stifly ganne he strike ; 

The shelde he brake I-myddis the feelde ; 524 

His Hawberke wolde not breke. 

Many goode strokes were delte. 

Ferumbras was a-greved tho, 
and the worthy He smote with mayne and myghte 528 

The nekke asonder, the ventayle also, 

That dede he sate vprighte. 

There was bataile harde and stronge ; 

Many a steede wente ther a-straye, 532 

And leyen at the grounde I-stonge, 

That resyn never aftyr that day, 
9000 pagans were IX thousand of the payens pride 


That day were slayn, 536 

and 8000 Romans. And viij thousande of the Romaynes side, 

That in the feelde dede laywe. 
Lukafer destroyed Lukafere, pat paynym proude, 

eighteen Romans, 

Slough Romaynes ey^tene, 540 

Of werr 1 moche sorowe he coude, 
lie also slew ^* s s ^ ro ^ es were over alle sene. 
Gyndard, a Gyndarde, a Senatoure of Rome, 

senator of Rome, J 

[leaf 14] Had slayne Sarsenys ten, 544 

who had slain ten ' 

Saracens. Tille he met with the cursed gome, 

Lukifere slough him than. 
Then came the Tho come the Pope with grete aray, 

Pope with a great 

guard and his His baner to-fore him wente. 548 

banner before 

him. r erumbras than gan to assaye, 

If he myght that praye entente, 
Ferumbras, sup- Supposynge in this thoughrtle, 

posing him to be J ' 

the sovereign, Ther was the souerayne ; 552 

He spared him therfore right noglit, 



But bare him down ther in ]> e playn. 

Anoon he sterte on him all ane 

His Ventayle for to onlace, 

And saugh his crown newe shafe, 

A-shamed thanne he was. 

" Fye, preest, god gyfe the sorowe ! 

What doist thou armede in the feelde, 

That sholdest saie thi matyns on morwe, 

What doist thou) with" spere and shelde 1 

I hoped, thou) hadiste ben an Empmmre, 

Or a Cheftayne of this Ooste here, 

Or some worthy conqueroure. 

Go home and kepe thy Qwer 1 ! 

Shame it were to me certayne 

To sle the in this bataile, 

Therf ore turne the home agayn I " 

The Pope was gladde J)er-of certayne, 1 

He wente home to Rome that nyght 

With Five thousande and no more, 

XV thousande lefte in the feelde aplight, 

Full grete sorowe was therfore. 

NOwe telle we of the messanger*, 
That wente to Charlemayne, 
Certyfyinge him by lettres dere, 
Howe the Romaynes were slayne, 
And howe the Contrey brente was 
Vnto the Gate of Rome, 
And howe the people song * alas/ 
Tille socoure from him come. 
" Who " quod Charles, that worthy kinge, 
" The Sowdon and Ferumbras ? 
I nyl lette for no thinge, 
Till I him oute of Cristendome chace. 
Therefore Gy of Burgoyn, 
Mynne owen nevewe so trewe, 

1 Read: < without faile.' 

burst open the 
thick crowd and 
threw him down 
KKf> to the ground. 


But seeing his 
tonsure, he was 

" Fie, priest," he 
said, " what doest 
560 thou in the 
battle-field ? 


It would be a 
shame for me to 
D6o slay thee. 

Go home and 
think of thy choir- 

The Pope 
retired with 
572 5000 men, 

being killed. 

576 Charlemagne, 
having learned 
from the mes- 
senger the great 
disaster which 
had befallen the 




[leaf 15] 
said, he 
would not 
desist until he 
had chased the 
soudan and 
Ferumbras out of 



He gave 1000 
pounds of francs 
to his nephew 
Guy of Burgundy, 

and sent him off 
with orders to 
advance against 
the soudan by 
forced marches. 

Himself would 
follow as soon as 

Lukafer of his 
vaunting promise 
to bring him 
Charlemagne and 

in return for his 



Lukafer said, he 
would do all he 
had promised. 

With 10,000 men 
he attacked the 
city on one side, 

the other being 
assaulted by 

The combat con- 
tinues as long as 
daylight lasts. 

At night they 
retired to their 

Take a thausande pounde of Frankis fyne, 

To wage wytfc the pepul newe. 

Take this with the nowe at this tyme, 

And more I wole sende the, 

Loke that thou spare no hors ne shelde, 

But fat he dede be ; 

And faste hye the thyderwarde, 

For I drede thay haue grete nede, 

And I shalle come aftirwarde 

As faste, as I may me spede." 

SPeke we of Sir Laban 
And let Charles and Gy be, 
Howe he ordeyned for hem than 
To Distroye Rome Citee. 
" Sir Lukafer', thou madiste thi boost 
To conquer* the Romaynes 
And to bringe me the Ooste 
Of the xij peris and Charlemayne. 
Vppon a condicion I graunte the 
My doghter, dere Dame Floripas. 
Wherefore, I aske nowe of the 
To holde covenawnte in this cas. " 
"That I saide" q?/od Lucafere, 
"To Mahounde I make a vowe 
To done al J?at I hight the ther", 
Ye and more than 1 for Florip love." 
He ordeyned assaute anone in haste 
With x thousande men and moo ; 
And Ferumbras at that oj>er side faste 
Assailed hem with grete woo. 
The saute endured al J>at daye 
From morowe, tille it was nyght, 
To throwe and shete by euery waye, 
While that hem endured the light. 
Tho wente thai home to thair* tentys, 
1 Sec tlie note. 











Tille it were on the morowe. G24 

Isres in his fals ententes 

Purposed treson and sorowe. 

He was chief Porter of the Town, 

By heritage and fee so he shulde be. 628 

He wente to the Sowdan, 

For the riche Cite be tray e woolde he, 

And saide " lorde, gife me grace 

For my goodes and for me, 632 

And I wole dolyuQi the this place 

To haue and holde for ever in fee. 

The keyes of this riche Cite 

I haue in my bandon." 636 

" That graunte I " qwod Laban " the 

To be free withoute raunson." 

Ferumbras made him yare, 

With xx u thousand men and moo, 

With this Isres for to fare, 

And to wynne the Cite soo. 

As sone as he entred was 

The chief Gate of alle, 

And alle his men in aras, 1 

He lete the Portcolys falle. 

He smote of the traitourus hede 

And saide " god gife him care ! 

Shal he never more ete brede, 

All traitowrs evel mot 2 thai fare ! 

If he myght leve and reigne here, 

He wolde betraye me ; 

For go he west, south or North, 

Traitowr shalle he never be." 

He dide lete bere his hede on a spere 

Through-oute this faire Citee. 

* Treson, treson ' thai cried there, 

Pite it was to here and see. 

1 Head : ' a ras.' ' MS. met 

C 2 

Isres, who pos- 
sessed by inherit- 
ance the guard of 
the principal gate, 

[leaf 16] 
planned treason. 

He repaired to the 
soudan and 
offered to betray 
the city on condi- 
tion that his life 
and property 
should be spared. 

The soudan pro- 
mised it. 

Ferumbras with 
20,000 men went 
640 with Isres. 

On entering the 

he caused the 
traitor's head to 
be struck off by 
the portcullis, and 




to be carried on 
the point of a 
656 spear through the 

" Treason," cried 
the people within, 



and all streets 
were soon covered 
with dead men. 

Ferumbras went 
to St. Peter's, 
seized the relics, 
the cross, the 
crown and the 

[leaf 17J 

burned the whole 

and carried away 
all the treasures 
and the gold to 
where the soudan 
went to stay. 
Three months 
and three days 
they spent there 
in great 
making offerings 
to their gods, 

and burning 
frankincense in 
their honour. 

They drank the 
blood of beasts 
and milk, and 
ate honey 

and snakes 
fried in oil. 

The people fled by every waye, 

Thai durst no-where a-bide. 660 

The hye wey ful of dede men laye, 

And eke by every lanys side. 

Ferumbras to Seinte Petris wente, 

And alle the Eelekes he seased anoon, 664 

The Crosse, the Crown, the Nailes bente ; 

He toke hem with him everychone. 

He dide dispoile al the Cite 

Both of tresoure and of goolde, 668 

And after that brente he 

Alle )>at ever myght be toolde. 

And alle the tresoure with hem J>ai bare 

To the Cite of Egremour*. 672 

Laban the Sowdon soiourned there 1 

Thre monies and thre dayes more 

In myrth and loye and grete solas. 

And to his goddes offrynge he made, 676 

He and his sone Sir Ferumbras 

Here goddis of golde dide fade, 

Thai brente Frankensense, 

That smoked vp so stronge, 680 

The Fume in her presence, 

It lasted alle alonge. 

Thai blewe homes of bras, 

Thai dronke beestes bloode. 684 

Milke and hony ther was, 

That was roial and goode. 

Serpentes in Oyle were fryed 

To serve )> e Sowdon with alle, 688 

" Antrarian Antrarian " thai lowde cryed 

That signyfied * loye generalle.' 

Thus thai lived in loye and blis 

Two monies or thre. 692 

Lete we now be alle this, 

1 See the note. 



And of Gye nowe speke we. 
~1^"T"Ow speke we of Sir Gye 

\ I That toward Rome hied with his Oost. 
-L 1 Whan he approched there-to so 11730, 
That he myght se the cooste, 
Alle on a flame J?at Cite was, 
That thre myle al abowte, 
Ther durst no man, J>at ther was, 
Come ny}e the Cite for grete dowte. 
That was a sory Cite than, 
Sir Gye was in grete care, 
Ther was nowhere a soryer man, 
For sorowe he sighed ful sare, 
And saide " welallas " l the while 
" For we come ar to late, 
For by some treson or some gyle 
Thai entred in at some Gate. 
There is no more but for to abyde, 
Tille Charles come, the kinge, 
In this mede Ynder grene wode side, 
To telle him of this tithinge, 
Howe Laban hath the Cite brente 
And bore the Religes 2 a-waye, 
And howe he hath hem to Spayne sente 
With Shippes of grete aray, 
To Egremour 1 his chief Cite, 
Ther to live and ende ; 
And manassith Charles and his baronye. 
God gife hem evelle ende ! " 
Kinge Charles he forgate nought 
To come to reskowe Rome, 
Alle his Do^ypers were I-sought, 
Fulle sone to him thay come. 
Thre hundred thousande of Sowdeoures 

1 MS. is rubbed, but it looks more like welawai. 
2 Read: 'reliqes.' 



When Sir Guy 
drew near Rome, 
finding the whole 
city in flames, 

704 he grieved much 

708 that he had 

arrived too late. 

He resolved there 
to wait for 
712 Charlemagne 

[leaf 18] 

and then to tell 
him, how Laban 
had burnt the 
f, * / city, and had sent 
*iO the relics to 



his principal tow i 
in Spain. 

King Charles 
advanced to 
rescue Rome wit 1 
his douzepeers 

and 300,000 


Roland led the 

Oliver the rear, 
the king was 

with the main 

The provisions 
were conveyed by 

Guy seeing them 
come, went to 

meet the king, 
and told him the 
mischief done by 
the soudan, 

who moreover 
had made a vow 
to seek Charles in 
France in order 
to afflict him 
with grief. 

[leaf 19] 

" He will find me 
near," said 
Charles, "and 

shall dearly pay 
for it. 

Unless he 
consents to be 

Kinge Charles with him dide lede, 728 

They were doughty in all stourys 

And worthy men of dede. 

Sir Eoulande fat worthy knighte, 

He ladde the Fowarde, 732 

And Sir Olyuer*, that was so wighte, 

Gouerned the Rerewarde. 

The Kinge himselfe and his Baronye, 

With Dukes And Erilles roialle, 736 

Gouerned alle the medil partye. 

By coramaundemente generall 

He ordeynede grete plente 

Of Flessh and Fissh, brede and wyne, 740 

In shippes to saile by the see, 

To serven him ful wel and fyne. 

Sir Gye aspied his comynge, 

He knewe the baner of Fraunce, 744 

He wente anoon ayen the kinge 

And tolde him of J>at myschaunce, 

Howe that the cursed Sowdan 

Hath brent Rome and bore the Relekis awaye, 748 

And how he hath slayn alle and some, 

That he hath founde of Cristen faye. 

And more-over he made his a-vowe, 

To seke kinge Charles in Fraunce 752 

And do him wo ther I-nowe. 

" God gif him moch myshaunce ! " 

"A" qwodl Charles " )jat neditli noght, 

He shal fynde me nere. 756 

By god, J)at dere me bogfrt, 

He shal by it ful dere. 

I shalle him never leve I-wis 

Withinne walle ner withoute, 760 

I swere by god and seinte Denys, 

Tille I have sought him oute ; 

And but if he will Baptised be 



And lefe his fals laye, 764 

Babyloyne shal he never see 

For alle his grete aray. 

A noon to shippe every mail 

With vitaile and with store, 

Euen towarde the proud Sawdan 

With-outen any more. 

Wynde him blewe ful fayre and goode 

Into the Ry ver of Ga3e, 

Even over the salte flode 

And oner the profounde rase. 

XXX legee} from Egremour 1 

By londe for south it is, 

And ther withoute any more 

To londe thai wente I-wis, 

And brente and sloughen al ]?at thai fonde, 

And stroyed both Toure and town. 780 

Thai lefte no thinge on grounde, 

That thai ne bete it down. 

Tithinggis were tolde to Laban, 

Howe Charles was I-come 784 

And slough bouth childe, wyfe, man 

And brente and stroyed alle and some 

With thre hundred thousand of Bacheleris, 

That were both stoute and gaye, 788 

And with him al his Dosyperis, 

Pepul of grete araye. 

" And but ye ordeyne remedy, 

He wole you brenne and slooii, 792 

Youe and youre riche Baronye, 

He wole leve a-life neuere oon." 

Whan Laban herde these tidyngys, 

His herte woxe alle coolde 796 

And saide " this is a wonder thinge ! 

Howe durste he be so boolde ? 

Litill kennyth he what I may doo, 

lie never shall see 
Babylon again." 

They all took 
ship without 

772 Propitious winds 
drove them into 
the river Gase, 
where they 

landed, 30 miles 
,, from Agremore, 
i 10 

and laid waste 
the country. 

Lahun, hearing 
this news , 

[leaf 20] 
was astonished 
at Charles's 



He assembled 
all his barons, 

and charged them 
to bring him 
alive that glutton 
that called 

himself king of 

and to slay the 

Ferumbras went 
forth with many 

He meets with 

They deal each 
other heavy 

Oliver cuts off a 
quarter of 
Lukafer's shield. 

The combat 
lasted the whole 

Well fought the 
twelve peers. 

He dredith me litil nowe. 

But certes he slialle, er* he goo, 

To Mahounde I make a vowe. 

Sir Lucafer 1 and Ferumbras 

To him dide he calle 

And Mavon and Sortebras 

And his Barons alle. 

I charge you vppon youre legeaunce, 

That ye bringe me that gloton, 

That clepeth himselfe kinge of Fraunce, 

Hidere to my Pavilon. 

Kepe him a-live, the remenaunte sle 

The xij Peris ychoon ! 

I shalle tech him curtesye, 

I s were by god Mahounde." 

Ferumbras anoon than 

Arrayed him for to ride 

With proude Sarasyns many a man, 

That boldely durst a-bide. 

Rowlande met with Ferumbras 

And gafe him such a stroke 

That al astonyed perof he was, 

It made him lowe to stoupe. 

Ferombras smote him agayne 

"With myghte and rnayrc, with ire 

That he stenyed alle his brayne, 

Him thought, his eyen were alle on fyro. 

With Lucafer* Oliver* mette, 

And hit him on the sheelde 

A stroke, that was right wel sette ; 

A quarter flye in the feelde. 

Thus thai hurteled to-gedere 

Alle the lefe longe daye, 

Nowe hider and nowe theder ; 

Mony an hors wente ther astraye. 

The Dosyperis thay foughten wele, 











Duke Neymys and Oger*, 836 

With goode sxverdes of fyne stele 

And so dide Gye and Syr Bryer*. 

Ferumbras was euer a-bowte 

To fyghte with Olyvere, 

And Olyuer* with-oute dowte 

Leyde on with goode chere. 

Kinge Charles saugh Fer umbras, 

To him fast he rode 

And it on the helme with his mace, 

That stroke sadlye abode. 

Ferumbras was woode for woo, 

He myght for prees come him to 

For no worldis thinge, that myght be tho. 

Kinge Charles anoon 1 loye oute-drowe, 

And with his owen honde 

XXX tt Sarseynys ther he slowe, 

That laie dede vppone the sonde ; 

Many of hem therfore made joy Inowe. 

Sir Lucafere of Baldas, 

He presed to Charles sone, 

And saide " Sir, with harde grace, 

What hastowe here to done ? 

I benight Laban to bringe the to him 

And the xij peris alle ; 

Now shaltowe come from al thy kyn 

Into the Sowdans halle. 

Yelde the to me " he saide, 

" Thy life shalle I safe." 864 

A stroke on him than Charles layde ; 

He made the Paynym to rafe. 

He smote him on the helme 

With mown-Ioye, his gode bronde. 868 

Ne hadde he be reskued than, 

He hade slayn him with his honde. 

1 A modern hand has written in the margin " Mount." 

[leaf 21] 

840 Ferumbras 

charges Oliver. 

King Charles, 
seeing this, rides 
844 on to Ferumbras, 

and strikes his 
helm with his 
heavy mace. 

cannot approach 
848 him on account 
of the crowd. 

with his sword 
Mounjoy slew 30 


Lukafer of 

856 encountering 

told him that 
he had promised 
860 the soudan to 
bring him 
Charles and the 

Charles strikes 
him on his 



but Lukafer is 
rescued by a 
great throng. 

Roland, drawing 
cleared a space 
around him and 

hammered tlic 
heads of the 

[leaf 22] 

So do the other 

and 30,000 
Saracens were 


At night the 
Pagans quit the 

Ferumbras vows, 
never to desist 

Than came Balde^yn} with thronge 

To reskue there here lorde, 872 

And nubens with hem amonge 

And Turkes by one accorde. 

Tho Roulande Durnedale oute-drowe 

And made Rorame 1 abowte. 87 G 

XL of hem ther he slowe, 

Tho were thai in grete dowte. 

Roulande as fiers as a lion 

With Durnedale 2 tho dinge 880 

Vppon the Sarsyns crowne, 

As harde as he myght flynge. 

Duke Neymys and Sir Olyuer*, 

Gy and Alloreynes of Loreyne, 884 

And alle the noble xij Peris, 

Oger* and Bryer* of Brytayne, 

Thai foughten as feythfully in }?at fight, 

The feelde ful of dede men laye. 888 

XXX* 1 thousande, I you plight, 

Of Sarsenys ther were slayn. 

Al thinge moste haue an ende, 

The nyghte come on ful sone, 892 

Every wighte retourned to wende ; 

Ferumbras to his men gan gone 

And saide " oure homes blowe we, 

This day haue we a ful ille afraye, 89 G 

To saie the south and not to lye, 

Oure goddis holpe vs not to daye, 

What devel J>at ever hem eilith. 

This bataile was so sharpe in faye, 900 

That many a man it wailyth. 

Shalle I never in herte be glade to daye, 

Till I may preve my myghte 

With Roulande, that proude ladde, 904 

Or with Olyuer 1 , that is so lighte, 

1 See the note. ' Insert : ' gan.' 



That evel hath vs ladde ; 

And in Paris be crowned kinge 

In despite of hem alle, 

1 wole leve for no thinge 

What so evere byfalle. 

Kinge Charles with grete honour* 

"Wente to his Pavilofi ; 

Of the treyumple he bare the flour* 

In dispite of Mahounde. 

Almyghty God and Seynte Denyse 

He thanked ful ofte sithe 

And oure lady Marie of Paris, 

That made hem gladde and blitfi. 

He recomendide the olde Knightes, 

That }>at daye hade the victorye, 

And charged the yonge with al her myghtes 

To haue hem in memory e ; 

For worth ynesse wole not be hadde, 

But it be ofte sougfrte, 

Ner knighthode wole not ben hadde, 

Tille it be dere boghte. 

" Therfore ye knightes, yonge of age, 

Of oolde ye may now lere, 

Howe ye shalle both hurle and rage 

In felde with sheelde and spere. 

And take ensample of the xij Peris, 

Howe thai have proved her myght, 

And howe thai were both wight and fiers 

To wynnen honourys in righte. 

These hethen houndes we shal a-tame 

By God in magiste, 

Let us make myrth" in goddis name 

And to souper nowe goo we." 

OThow, rede Mar^ Armypotente, 
That in the trende baye hase made J>y trone, 
That god arte of bataile and regent 

unless he be 
crowned king at 
908 Paris. 



Charles went to 
bis pavilion and 

thanked God 

and St. Mary of 

He praised the 
elder knights for 
920 having won the 
victory and 
exhorted the 
young ones 




[leaf 23] 

to take an 
example by them. 


They make merry 
and go to supper. 

Prayer addressed 
. _ to the red Mars 
1)40 Anuipotent, 



to grant the 
Mahometans the 
victory over the 

In the spring of 
the year 

[leaf 24] 

man ought to 
show his 

and to think of 

For none can be a 
good warrior, 
unless he knows 
how to love. 

And rulist alle that alone, 

To whom I profre precious present, 

To the makande my moone 

With herte, body and alle myn entente, 

A crown of precious stoones, 

And howe to the I gyfe 

Withouten fraude or engyne, 

Vppofi thy day to make offerynge, 

And so shal I ever, while fat I live, 

By righte J>at longith to my laye, 

In worshipe of thy reverence 

On thyn owen Tewesdaye 

With inyrr 1 , aloes and Frankensense, 

Vppon condition that thou me graunte, 

The victorye of Crystyn Dogges, 

And that I may some 1 hem adaunte 

And sle hem down as hogges, 

That have done me distruccion 

And grete disherytaunce 

And eke slayn my men with wronge. 

Mahounde gyfe hem myschaunce ! " 

IN the semely seson of the yere, 
Of softenesse of the sonne, 
In the prymsauns of grene vere, 
Whan floures spryngyn and bygy/me, 
And alle the floures in the fritll 
Freshly shews here kynde, 
Than it is semely therwyth", 
That manhode be in mynde ; 
For corage wole a man to kith, 
If he of menske haue mynde, 
And of loue to lystyn and lithe, 
And to seke honur 1 for J?at ende. 
For he was neuere gode werryour*, 
That cowde not loue a-ryght ; 

1 Read: 'sorie.' 












For louc hath made many a conquerour* 

And many a worthy knighte. 

This worthy Sowdan, though he he)>en wer 1 , 

He was a worthy conquerour' ; 

Many a contrey with shelde and spere 

He conquerede wyth grete honoure. 

And his worthy sone Eerumbras, 

That kinge was of Alisaundr 1 , 

And Lucaf er* of Baldas, 

That cruel kinge of Cassaundr*, 

That wroughten wonders with here honde 

With myghte and mayne for to fyghte, 

And over-ride mony a manly londe, 

As men of Armes hardy and wighte. 

The Sowdan seyinge this myschief, 

How Charles hade him a-greved, 

That grevaunce was him no thinge lese, 1 

He was ful sore ameved. 

He sente oute his bassatoures 

To Realmes, provynces ferr* and ner*, 

To Townes, Citeis, Castels and Tours, 

To come to him thei j he were, 

To Inde Maior and to Assye, 

To Ascoloyne, Yenys, Frige and Ethiope, 

To Nubye, Turk ye and Barbarye, 

To Macedoine, Bulgar 1 and to Europe. 

Alle these people was gadred to Agremore, 

Thre hundred thousand of Sarsyns felle, 

Some bloo, some yolowe, some blake as more, 

Some horible and stronge as devel of helle. 

He made hem drinke Wilde beestes bloode, 

Of Tigre, Antilope and of Camalyon, 

As is here vse to egre here mode, 

Whan }>ai in werre to battayle goon. 

He saide to hem " my frendes der*, 

As my trust is alle in you, 

1 Read: 'lefe.' 



The soudan was 



Ferumbras and 

Lukafer wrought 

wonders with 
their hands. 



The soudan sent 
for his vassals, 


and assembled 
more than 300,000 
1004 Saracens 

at Agremore. 




He addressed 
them in order 



to increase their 

ordered a solemn 
sacrifice to his 

and charged 

to march with 
30,000 of Ins 

against the 
Christian King, 
whom he wished 
to teach courtesy, 

[leaf 20] 
and to slay 
all his men 
except Roland 
and Olive , 

On these Frenche dogges, that bene here, 

Ye moste avenge me no we. 

Thai have done rne vilanye, 

Mikille of my people have thay slayn. 1016 

And yet more-over thay manace me 

And drive me to my contrey agayn ; 

Wherefore I wole at the bygynnynge 

To Mahounde and to my goddis alle 1020 

Make a solempne offerynge ; 

The better shall it vs byfalle. 

The laste tyme thai were wrothe, 

We hade not done oure dute. 1024 

Therefore to saye the southe " 

There were many hornys bio we, 

The preestes senden thikke I-nowe 

Goolde, and silver thikke thai thro we, 1028 

With noyse and crye thai beestes slowe, 

And thought to spede wel I-nowe ; 

And every man his vowe he made 

To venge the Sowdan of his tene. 1032 

Here goddis of golde thai wex alle fade, 

The smoke so grete was hem bitwene. 

Whan alle was done, the Sowdan than 

Charged Ferumbras redy to be 1036 

On the morowe, ere day began, 

To ride oute of Jjat Cite 

With xxx tl thousande of Assiens, 

Frigys, Paens and Ascoloynes, 1040 

Turkis, Indeis and Venysyens, 

Barbarens, Ethiopes and Macidoynes, 

" Bringe him to me, that proude kinge ; 

I shal him teche curtesye, 1044 

Loke that thou leve for nothinge 

To sle alle his other mayne, 

Safe Eouland and Olyuere, 

That bene of grete renowne, 1048 


If thai wole reneyc her 1 goddis ther* 
And Jeven on myghty Mahounde." 

F Ei-umbras with grete araye 
Rode forthe, Mahounde him spede, 
TilJe he came ny^e ther 1 Charles lay 
By syde in a grene mede. 
In a woode he buskede his men 
Prively that same tyde, 
And with his felowes noon but ten 
To kinge Charles he gan ride 
And said " sir* kinge, that Arte so kene, 
Upon trwes I come to speke with the, 
If thou be curteis, as I wene, 
Thou wolte graunte a bone to me, 
That I mighte fight vppon this grene, 
With Rouland, Olyvere and Gye, 
Duke Neymes and Oger 1 1 mene, 
Ye and Duke Richarde of Normandy e, 
With al sex attones to fight. 
My body I profr* here to the 
And requyre the, kinge, thou) do me right, 
As thou art gentille Lord and fre ; 
And if I may eonquere hem in fere, 
To lede them home to my Faderis halle ; 
And if thai me, I graunte the here, 
To be thy man, body and alle. 
The kinge Answered with wo^'s mylde 
And saide " felowe, J>at neditfi nought, 
I shalle fynde of myn a Childe, 
That shal the fynde that thou hast sought." 
The kinge lete calle Sir Roulande 
And saide " thou most with this man fight, 
To take this bataile here on honde, 
Ther-to God gyfe the grace and myghte ! " 
Roulande answered with woordis boolde 
And saide " Sir, have me excused! ! " 




if they would 
renounce their 

Ferumbras led 
out his troops ; 

until arriving 
near Charles's 
camp, he ordered 


to halt in a wood, 

and advanced 
with only ten of 
his men to the 
camp of 

and offered him 
in/*,! to fight at once 
1004 against 

Roland, Oliver, 
Guy, Duke 
Nuyraes, Ogier 
the Dane, and 
Richard of 




If he should 
conquer them, he 
would lead them 
away to his 
father's hall ; 
if he should be 
he would be hia 

The king sent 
for Roland and 
1080 ordered him to 
undertake the 

Roland refuses, 



He saide, certeynly he ne wolde ; 
The bataile vttirly he refused, 
because Charles Th e laste day ye preised faste 

had praised the J " 

[leaf 27] The oolde knightes of her 1 worthynes. 1 088 

old knights. 

Let hem goon forth, I haue no haste, 
" Ma - v the y 8how Thai may goo shewen her 1 prowes." 

their valour 

now." For that worde the kinge was wrothe 

Charles, vexed, 

smites Rdand on And smote him on the mouthe on hye, 1092 

the mouth, 

so that the blood The bloode at his nose oute-goth, 

springs from his . 

nose, And saide " traitowr, thou shalte a-bye. 

traitor. " A-bye " quod Koulande " wole I noughte, 

And traitour was I never none, 1096 

By fat lord, bat me dere hath bought ! " 

Roland draws his And braide oute Durnedale ber 1 anone. 


Ho wolde haue s my ten the kinge ther 1 , 
but the other Ne hadde the barons ronne bytwene ; 1100 

barons separate 

them The kinge with-drowe him for fer* 

And passed home as it myght beste bene. 
and try to con- The Barons made hem at one 

ciliate them. 

With grete prayer 1 and instaunce, 1104 

As every wrath moste over-gone, 

Of the more myschiefe to make voydaunce. 

Meanwhile Oliver, OlyUCre herde telle of thlS, 

wounded, kept his That in his'bedde laye seke sore. 1108 

bed, on hearing . . 

of this dispute, He armede him ful sone I-wisse, 

had armed him- . . ., . . , .,, 

self and went to And to the kinge he wente withoute more 
And saide " Sir Kinge, a bone graunte me 
He reminds him JT or a ll e the servyse, that I haue done, 1112 

of his long 

services, and To fight with bat kinge so free 

demands the 

battle. To morue day, ere it be none. 

Charles answered to Olyuer 1 : 
Charles remon- Thou arte seke and woundede sore, 1116 

strates with him. 

And thou also my cosyn dere, 
Therfore speke thereof no more." 
Bat Oliver Sir Kinge " he saide " I am alle hoole, 

I aske you this bone in goddis name." 1120 


" Certes " he saide " I holde the a fole, 

But I praye, god sheelde the fro shame." 

Forth he rideth in that Forest, oiwer rides to the 

Tille he gan Ferumbras see, 1124 and finds 

Where he was light and toke his rest, alighted under a 

.__. . , ,., tree, to a branch 

His stede renewed til a grene tre. of which MS 

Sir" he saide "reste thou) wele ! 

Kinge Charles sente me hidur*. 1128 

" Arise," he said, 

If thou be curteys knighte and lele, "lam come to 

fight with thee." 

Rise vp and let vs fight to-geder. [leaf 28] 

Ferumbras sate stille and lough, Ferumbras, 

without moving, 

Him listenot to rise oute of the place. 1132 demands his 6* 

" My felowe " quod he " what arte thou ? 

Telle me thy name for goddis grace." 

" Sir " he saide " Generyse, "i am Generys," 

says Oliver, " a 

A yonge knighte late dobbet newe." 1136 young knight 

lately dubbed." 

" By Mahounde " quod he " thou arte not wyse, 

For thy comyng shaltowe sore rewe. 

I holde Charles but a foole Ferumbras 


To sende the hidei to me, 1140 "cimriesisa 

fool to send thee. 

I shall the lerne a newe scole, 

If thoue so hardy to fighte be. 

I wende, he wolde haue sende Roulande, 

Olyuer 5 and iiij mo Dosyperys, 1144 

That hade bene myghty men of honde 

Bataile to a-bide stronge and fiers. 

With the me liste no playe begynne, 

Ride agayn and saye him soo ! 1 1 48 GO and ten wm to 

T . send me Roland 

Of the may I no worshype wynne, and Oliver, and 

IYI ITT *- 1 -i IT )> suc h f ur other 

Though I slough the and such V mo." douzepeers. 

" Howe longe " quod Olyuer 1 " wiltowe plete 1 
Take thyfi armes and come to me, 1152 

Ajid prove J?at thou saiest in dede, oiTvtrf'S take 

For boost thou blowest, and jjenkes 1 me." thy arms." 

Whan Ferumbras herde him speke so Wei, 
1 Head: ' as thenketh.' 




Ferumbras is 
wrath and seizes 
his helmet, 

which Oliver 
assists him to 

thanks him, 
bowing to him. 
They mount their 

rush together 
like fire of 

[leaf 29] 
thunder, and 
have their lances 

They draw their 

Ferumbras smites 
Oliver on his 

so that the 
fire flies. 
Oliver strikes at 
the head of 

breaks away the 
circle of his 

and the sword 
glancing off down 
his back, he 

cuts off two 
bottles of balm, 

He caught his helrne in grete Ire, 1156 

That wroght was of goode fyne stele 

With Perlis pight, Rubeis and Saphire. 

Olyuer 1 halpe him it to onlase ; 

Gilte it was alle abowte. 1160 

Ferumbras Ranked him of his grace 

And curteisly to him gan lowte. 

Thai worthed vp on here stedes, 

To luste thai made hem preest, 1164 

Of Armes to shewe her 1 myghty dedis 

Thai layden here speres in a-reeste, 

To-geder thai ro?inen as fire of thonder*, 

That both here Launces to-braste. 1168 

That they seten, it was grete wonder ; 

So harde it was, J?at thay gan threste. 

Tho droweii thai oute here swordes kene 

And smyten to-geder by one assente. 1172 

There thai hitten, it was wele sene ; 

To sle eche other was here entente. 

Syr Ferumbras smote Olyuer* 

Yppoii the helme righte on hye 1176 

With his swerde of metel cler*, 

That the fyre he made oute-flye. 

Olyuer* him hitte agayn vpon the hede 

1 the hede than fulle sore, 1180 

He carfe awaye with myght and mayne 
The cercle, that sate vppon his crown. 
The stroke glode down by his bake, 
The Arson he smot ther awaye 1184 

And the botelles of bawme withoute lake, 
That uppone the grene ther thai laye, 
That were trussed by-hynde him faste. 
Tho Ferumbras was fuH woo ; 1188 

Olyuer* light adowfi in haste, 
The botellis he seased both two, 

1 Blank in MS. See the note. 


He threwe hem into the River than 

As ferr 5 as he myghte thro we. 1192 

"Alas" quod. Ferumbras "what doistowe, 1 manne? 

Thou art wode, as I trowe. 

Thai were worth an C ml pounde 

To a man, fat were wounded sore. 1196 

Ther was no preciosowr thinge vppoii grounde, 

That myghte helpe a man more. 

Thou shalt abye by Mahounde, 

That is a man of myghtes moost. 1200 

I shall breke both bake and crown 

And sle the, ther thou goist." 

Tho Olyuer* worth vp agayn, 

His swerde he hade pute I-drawe. 1204 

Ferumbras him smote with niayne 

And mente to haue him slawe. 

He smote as doth the dinte of fondir ; 

It glased down by his sheelde 1208 

And carfe his stedes neke a-sonder, 

That dede he fille in the felde. 

Wightly Olyuer 1 vp-sterte 

As Bacheler, doughti of dede, 1212 

With swerde in honde him for to hirte 

Or Ferumbras goode stede. 

That Ferumbras aspied welle, 

He rode a-waye than ful faste 1216 

And tiede him to a grene hasel, 

And come ay en to him in haste 

And saide "no we yelde the to me ! 

Thou maiste not longe endure ; 1220 

And leve on Mahounde, Jjat is so der*, 2 

And thy life I shalle the ensure. 3 

Thou shalt be a Duke in my contr', 

And men haue at thyn owen wille. 1224 

To my Sustir shaltowe wedded be, 

1 MS. deistowe. 2 Head : ' free.' 3 MS. ensuce. 

D 2 

which he throws 
into the river. 

Ferumbras tells 
him that they 
were invaluable 
to a wounded 
man, and that he 

should atone 
for their loss with 
his life. 

He strikes at 
Oliver, who 
wards off the 
blow with his 
shield, but his 
steed is killed 
under him. 

[leaf 30] 

Oliver quickly 
starts up and 
tries to kill his 
adversary's horse, 

but Ferumbras 
rides off 
and ties it to a 

"Yield thyself to 
me," says 
Ferumbras ; 

"believe on 
Mahound, and I 


make thee a 

duke in my 


and give thee 

my sister." 



" Ere I yield to 
thee," answered 
Oliver, "thou 
shall feel my 

They fight for a 



the blood ran 
from both their 
bodies. By 
mutual consent 
they stop to take 

Ferumbras asks 
again his 
name and kin. 

" Thou must be 
one of the douze- 
peers, as thou 
fightest so well." 

" I am Olirer, 
cousin to 
[leaf 31] 

*' Thou art 
welcome here," 
says Ferumbras ; 

" thou slowest my 

It were pite the for to spille ! " 

" Better " quod. Olyuer* " skul we dele, 

By God that is in magiste, 1228 

And of my strokes shaltow more fele, 

Er I to the shalle yelde me." 

Thai smeten togeder with egre mode, 

And nathir of othire dradde ; 1232 

Thai persed her* hauberkes, that were so goode, 

Tille both thayr bodyes bladde. 

Thay foughten soo longe, fat by assente 

Thai drewe hem a litil bysyde, 1236 

A litil while thaym to avente, 

And refresshed hem at J?at tyde. 

" Generis" qtiod. Ferumbras, 

" As thou arte here gentil knighte, 1240 

Telle me nowe here in this place 

Of thy kyn and what thou) hight ; 

Me thenkith by the now evermore, 

Thou shuldist be one of the xij peris, 1244 

That maiste fighte with me so sore, 

And arte so stronge, worthy and fiers." 

Olyuere answered to hym agayn : 

" For fer> I leve it not ontoolde, 1 248 

My name is Olyuere certayn, 

Cousyn to kynge Charles the boolde, 

To whome I shalle the sende 

Qwikke or dede this same daye, 1252 

By conqueste here in this feelde, 

And make the to renye thy laye." 

" " qwod Ferumbras than to Olyuer 1 , 

" Welcome thou) arte in-to this place, 1256 

I have desyrede many a yere 

To gyfe the harde grace. 

Thou slough my u uncle Sir Persagyiie, 

The doughty kinge of Italy e, 1260 

The worthyeste kinge J)at lyued of men, 


By Mahounde, thou shalt abye ! " now thou shait 

pay the 

Tho thai dongen faste to-geder* penalty i 

While the longe day endured, 1264 The fight 

continued the 

hither* and nowe tinder* ; whole day. 

Fro strokes wytfr sheeldes here bodies }>ai couered. 
And at the laste Olyuei* smote him so At last Oliver, 

Vppon the helme, J?at was of stele, 1268 Ferumbras upon 

the helmet, has 

That his swerde brake in two. his sword 

, , , , , broken. 

Tho wepen had he nevere a dele. 

Who was woo but Olyuere than 1 ? 

He saugh noone other remedy. 1272 

He saide " sir 1 , as thou) arte gentile man, 

On me nowe here haue mercy. 

It were grete shame I-wis, 

And honur ) were it noon, 1276 

To sle a man wepenles ; 

That shame wolde never* goon." 

" Nay traitow, thou getiste noon. 

Hade I here an hundred and moo ! 1280 

Knele down and yelde the here anoon, 

And eles here I woole the sloo." 

Olyuer* saugh, it wolde not be, 

To truste to moch in his grace. 1284 

He ranne to the stede, bat stode by the fav?, He ran to the 

steed at the tree 

A swerde he raught in bat place, and seized a 

sword that was 

That was trussed on Ferumbras stede, hanging there ; 

Of fyne stele goode and stronge. 1288 

He thought he quyte l Ferumbras his mede. 

Almoost hadde he abyde to longe ; 

For in turnynge Ferumbras him smote, [leaf 32] 

but in turning on 

That stroke he myghte welle fele, 1292 Ferumbras he 

, , received a blow 

It come on hym so hevy and hoote, 

That down it made hym to knele. that made him 

kneel down. 

Tho was Olyuer 1 sore ashamede 

And saide "thou cursed Sarasyne, 1296 

1 See the note. 



But Oliver 
returns him 
fearful stroke. 

Charles, seeing 
Oliver on his 

prayed to Christ 

that he might 
grant the victory 
over the Pagan. 

An angel 
announces him, 

that his prayer 
was heard. 

Charles thanks 

[leaf 83] 

Thy proude pride shall be atamed, 
By God and by seinte Qwyntyne. 
Thou hast stole on me that dynte, 
I shall quyte the thyn hire." 1300 

A stroke than Olyuer 1 him lente, 
That hym thought his eyen wer* on fiY. 
Kinge Charles in his pavilon was 
And loked towarde J?at fyghte 1304 

And saugh, howe fiers Ferumbras 
Made Olyuere knele down right. 
Wo was him tho in his herte ; 

To Ihesu Criste he made his mone ; 1308 

It was a sight of peynes smerte, 
That Olyuere kneled so sone : 
" Lord, God in Trinite, 

That of myghtis thou) arte moost, 1312 

By vertue of thy maieste 
That alle knoweste and woste, 
Lete not this hethen man 

Thy seruawnte ouercome in fyght, 1316 

That on the bileve ne kan, 
Ihesu, Lorde, for thy myghte ! 
But graunte thy man the victorye, 
And the Paynyni skomfited to be, 1320 

As thou arte Almyghty God of glorye ! 
Nowe mekely, Lorde, I pray to the." 
To Charles anoone an Aungel came 
And broght him tidingges sone, 1324 

That God had herde his praier 1 thafi 
And graunte him his bone. 
Tho Charles thanked God aboue 1 
With herte and thought, worde and dede, 1328 

And saide " blessed be thou), lorde almyghty, 1 
That helpiste thy seruaimte in nede." 
These Champions to-gedir thai gone 
'_ See the note. 



With strokes grete and eke sure, 

Eche of hem donge othir on, 

Alle the while thai myghte endur*. 

Ferumbras brake his swerde 

On Olyueris helme on hye. 

Tho wexe he ful sore a-ferde ; 

He ramie for an othir redyly 

And saide " Olyuere, yelde the to me 

And leve thy Cristeii laye, 

Thou shalte have alle 1 my kingdome free 

And alle aftir my daye." 

"Fye, Saresyne" qwod Olyuere than, 

" Trowest thou, that I were wode, 

To forsake him, ]?at made me man 

And boght me with his hert blode." 

He raught a stroke to Ferumbras, 

On his helme it gan down glyde, 

It brast his hawberke at J?at ras 

And carfe hym throughe-oute his syde, 

His bare guttis men myght see ; 

The blode faste down ranne. 

" Hoo, Olyvere, I yelde me to the, 

And here I become thy man. 

I am so hurte, I may not stonde, 

I put me alle in thy grace. 

My goddis ben false by water and londe, 

I reneye hem alle here in this place, 2 

Baptised nowe wole I be. 

To Ihesu Crist I wole me take, 

That Charles the kinge shal sene, 3 

And alle my goddes for-sake. 

Take myn hawberke and do it on the, 

Thou shalte haue fuH grete nede. 

1332 They begin 


TOO* breaks his sword 
lOOO on Oliver's 









He runs for 
another and asks 
Oliver to sur- 

But Oliver 
aims at 
Ferumbras a 
blow which cuts 
his hauberk, so 

that his bowels 
are laid bare. 

implores his 
mercy, and 

consents to be 
christened, his 
gods having 
proved false. 

He requested 
him to take his 
hauberk, to 

1 Probably an error for 'half.' 

3 In the margin the Scribe adds .-'The merci Ladi helpe.' 
3 See the note. 



fetch his horse, 

and to carry him 

to his own tent. 

[leaf 34] 

But the Saracens, 
who lay concealed 
in the wood, rush 

Oliver, being 
surrounded, sets 

down Ferumbras 
under an olive- 
tree, and defends 
with his sword, 

dealing the 
Saracens many a 
hard blow. 

Then Roland 
rushed into the 
throng of the 
enemy and slew 

X thousande Saresyns waiten vppon me, 

And therfore go take my stede. 

Lay me to-fore the, I the praye, 

And lede me to thy tente. 1368 

Hye the faste forth in thy way, 

That the Saresyns the not hente." 

A-noon it was done, as he ordeynede, 

And faste forth thai ryden. 1 1372 

The Saresyns anone assembled, 

For to haue with hem foghten. 

Ferumbras saugft the feelde thore 

Of Sarsynes fully filled ; 1376 

Of Olyvere dradde he ful sore, 

That Saresyns shulde him haue killed. 

He praide, that he wolde let him down 

" Vndir yonde Olyfe tree, 1 380 

For if ye cast me down here, with hors shoon 2 . 

Alle to-treden shalle 1 be." 

He priked forth and layde him thar*, 2 

Out of the horses trase, 1384 

And with his swerde by-gan him wer*, 

For amonge hem alle he was. 

A Saresyn smote him with a spere, 

That it brake on pecis thre ; 1388 

His hauberke myght he not der>, 

So stronge and welle I-wroght was he. 

He hit J>at Saresyns with his swerde 

Through the helme in-to the brayne. 1392 

He made an other as sore aferde, 

He smote of his Arme with mayne. 

But than come Eoulande with Durnedale 

And made way him a-bowte. 1396 

He slowe hem down in the vale, 

Of him hade thai grete dowte. 

The prees of Saresyns was so stronge 

1 Read : ' soghten.' 2 2 See the note. 


A-boute Eoulande that tyde. 1400 

Thai slougheii his horsys with thronge, his horse being 

killed by arrows 

And dartis throwen on every syde. and darts, 

Whan Eoulande was on his Fete, he fights on foot, 

Than was he woo with-alle. 1404 

Many of hem he felte yete 

And dede to grounde made hem falle. 

At the last his swerde brake, but his sword 


Than hadde he wepyn noon, 1408 

As he smote a Saresyns bake [leaf ss] 

A-sundre down to the Arson. 

Tho was he caught, he myght not flee, he is taken 

His hondes thai bounden faste 1412 

And lad him forth to here Cite, and led away. 

And in depe prison they hem caste. 

Olyuer* sawe, howe he was ladde, 

A sorye man than was he ; 1416 

Him hadde leuer to haue bene dede 

Than suifren that myschief to be. 

Smertly aftire he pursued tho, Oliver rides 

To reskue his dere brother. 1420 

The prees was so grete, he myghte not so, 

It myghte be no othir, 

Be he was cowjje 1 by veri j force 

With LX of Astopartes. 2 1424 

Thai hurte him foule and slough" his hors but his horse 

being also killed, 

With gauylokes and wyth dartis. 

Yet on foote, ere he were foolde, 

He slough of hem fiftene. 1428 

He was not slayn, as god woolde, 

But taken and bounded 3 w^tft tene. he is overpowered 

and bound. 

Tho were taken to Lucafer, Both were 

conducted to 

The proude kinge of Baldas, 1432 Lukaferof 

Both Roulande and Olyuer*. 

1 Read: 'caughte.' 2 Ascopartes. 

3 MisiKritten for 'bounder/ 



Charles sees 


and calls for a 

Many enemies 
were slain, 

but the Saracens 
had fled with 
their prisoners, 
and Charles is 
obliged to turn 

Under a holm tree 
they find 

Deaf 36] 

whom he is 
going to put to 

But on his 
requesting to be 

Charles took pity 
with him, 

Gladde was he of that cas. 
Kinge Charles was in herte woo, 

When he saughe his neucwes so ladde, ] 436 

He cried to the Frenshmeii tho : 
, " Reskue we these knyghtes at nede." 
The kynge himselfe slough many one, 
So dede the Barons bolde. 1 440 

It wolde not bene, thai were agon, 
Magre who so woolde. 
The Saresyns drewe hem to here Cite, 
Kinge Charles turned agayne. 1444 

He saugfc under an holme tre, 
Where a knight him seined lay slayn. 
Thederward he rode with swerde in honde. 
Tho he saugfi, he was alyve ; 1448 

He lay walowynge vppon the sonde 
With blody woundes fyve. 
" What arte thow 1 " quod. Charlemayne, 
" Who hath the hurte so sore ? " 1452 

" I am Ferumbras " he saide certayfi, 
" That am of hethen lore." 
" fals Saresyn " qwod the kinge, 
" Thou shalte have sorowe astyte ; 1456 

By the I haue lost my two Cosynes, 
Thyii hede shalle I of-smyte." 
" gentil kinge " qiiod. Ferumbrase, 
" Olyuere my maister me hight 1460 

To be Baptised by goddis grace, 
And to dyen a Cristen knighte. 
Honur* were it noon to the 

A discoumfite man to slo, 1464 

That is connected and Baptized wolde be 
And thy man bycomeii also." 
The kinge hade pite of him than, 

He toke him to his grace 1468 

And assyned anooii a man 


To lede him to his place. led him to ins 

tent, and ordered 

He sende to him his surgyne a surgeon to 

_ . _ attend him. 

i o hele his woundes wyde. 1472 

He ordeyned to him such medycyn, 

That sone myght he go and ryde. He soon 

The kinge commaunded bishope Turpyn 

To make a fonte redye, 1476 

To Baptise Ferumbras ]>erm 

In the name of god Alrnygfrtye. 

He was Cristened in j?at welle, and bishop Turpin 

Floreyne the kinge alle him calle, 1480 by the name of 

He forsoke the foule feende of helle 

And his fals goddis alle. 

Nought for than Femmbras But he continued 

Alle his life cleped was he, 1484 Ferumbras aiihis 

And aftirwarde in so wine place, Afterwards he 

-, . T - t ~ . . was known as 

Floreyne of Rome Cite. rioreynofRome 

God for him many myracles shewed!, 

So holy a man he by -came, 1488 on account of his 

That witnessith" both lerned and lewde, 

The fame* of him so ranne. 

for to telle of Eoulande Roland and 

And of Olyuere, that worthy wos, 1 1492 brought to tta 

_ rt t Soudan, Laban 

-A- 1 Howe thai were brougnt to jr bowdaft enquires their 

iBy the kinge of Boldas. 
The Sowdan hem sore affrayned, 

"What ]?at here names were. 1496 

Rouland saide and noght alayned : 

" Syr Eoulande and sire Olyuere, They confess 

Sevewea to Kinge Charles of Fraunce, 
That worthy kinge and Emperoure, 1500 

That nowe are takyn by myschaunce 
To be prisoneres here in thy toure." 
"" A, Olyuer 1 , arte thou here ? 

That haste my sone distroyede, 1504 

1 'was.' 



The Soudan 
swears they shall 
both be executed 
the next morning 
before his dinner. 

But Floripas 
advises him to 
detain them 
as hostages, and 

to remember his 
son Ferumbras, 

for whom they 
might be 

The Soudan finds 
her counsel good, 

[leaf 38] 

and orders his 
gaoler Bretomayn 
to imprison 

but to leave them 
without food. 

And Bouland that arte his fere, 
That so ofte me hatfc anoyed. 
To Mahounde I make a vowe here, 
That to morue, ere I do ete, 1508- 

Ye shulle be slayn both qwik in fere, 
And lives shalle ye bothe lete." 
Tho saide maide Florepas : 

" My fader so derewortfr and der 1 , 1512: 

Ye shulle be avysed of this cas, 
How and in what manere 
My brothir, fat is to prison take, 

May be delyuered by hem no we, 1516 

By cause of these two knightes sake, 
That bene in warde here with you). 
Wherefore I counsaile you), my fader dere. 
To have mynde of Sir Ferumbras. 1520 

Pute hem in youre prison here, 
Tille ye haue better space. 
So that ye haue my brother agayn 
For hem, Jiat ye haue here ; 1524 

And certeyn elles wole he be slayn, 
That is to you so lefe and dere." 
" A, Floripp, I-blessed thou bee, 

Thy counsaile is goode at nede, 1528 

I wolde not leve my sone so free, 
So Mahounde moost me spede, 
For al the Eealme of hethen Spayne, 
That is so brode and large. 1532' 

Sone clepe forth my gaylow?' Bretomayne, 
That he of hem hadde his charge, 
" Caste hem in your prison depe, 

Mete and drinke gyfe hem none, 1536 

Chayne hem faste, J?at thay not slepe ; 
For here goode daies bene a-gone." 
Tho were thay cast in prison depe 1 ; 
1 Read: ' dirke.' 


-Every tyde the see came inne. 1540 At high tide the 

sea filled their 

Thay myght not see, so was it myrke, deep ceils. 

The watir wente to her chynne. 

The salte watir hem greved sore, They suffered 

much from the 

Here woundis sore did smerte. 1544 salt water, from 

. their wounds, and 

Hungir and thurste greved heme yet more, from hunger.. 

It wente yet more nere here herte. 

Who maye live withoute mete ? 

vj dayes hadde thay riglit none, 1548 On the sixth day, 

JX"er drinke that thay myght gete, 

Bute loked vppon the harde stone. 

So on a daye, as God it wolde, 

Fioripas to hir garden wente, 1552 Fioripas, who was 

. ., gathering flowers 

To geder Floures in morne colde. in her garden, 

Here maydyns from hir she sente, 

For she herde grete lamentacion heard them 

In the Prison, that was ther nye ; 1556 

She supposed by ymagynacion, 

That it was the prisoners sory. 

She wente her 1 nerr* to here more, 

Thay wailed for defaute of mete. 1560 

She rued on hem anoon f ul sore, Moved to 

She thought, how she myght hem beste it gete. 

She spake to her Maistras Maragounde, she asks her 

n i _ _ _ . governess Mara- 

Howe she wolde the prisorieres fede. 1564 goundto i.eipher 

The develle of helle hir confounde, 
She wolde not assente to fat dede, 

refuses, and 

But saide " Damesel, thou arte woode, reminds 

Thy Fadir did vs alle defende, 1568 command. 
Both mete and drinke and othere goode [leaf 39] 

That 110 man shulde hem thider sende." 

Floripe by-thought hir on a gyie Fioripas, thinking 

And cleped Maragounde anoon right, 1572 called to her 

rr, , - , ., governess to come 

lo the wyndowe to come a while to a window aa 

And se ther a wonder syght : 

" Loke oute " she saide " and see a ferr> 



see the porpoises 
sporting beneath. 
looking out, is 
pushed into the 

Floripas asks 
Bretomayn to let 
her see the 

The gaoler 
to complain to 
her father, 

but Floripas, 

having seized his 

dashed out his 

She then went to 
tell her father, 
[leaf 40] 

she had surprised 
the gaoler feeding 
he prisoners and 

The Porpais pley as thay were wode." 157$ 

Maragounde lokede oute, Floripe come ner 1 
And shofed hire oute in to the flode. 
" Go there " she saide " the devel the spede ! 
My counsail shaltowe never biwry. 1580 

Who so wole not helpe a man at nede, 
On evel deth mote he dye ! " 
She toke with" hire maidyns two, 

To Britomayne she wente hir waye 1584 

And saide to him, she moste go 
To viseteii the prisoneris that daye, 
And saide " sir, for alle loues, 

Lete me thy prisoneres seen. 1588 

I wole the gife both" goolde and gloues, 
And counsail shalle it been." 
Brytomayne that lay lor kene 

Answered to hir sone agayne 1592 

And saide " Damesel, so mote I then, 
Than were I worthy to be slayn. 
Hath not youre Fader charged me, 
To kepe hem from every wyght 1 1596 

And yet ye wole these traytowrs see 1 
I wole goo telle him Anoon right." 
He gan to turne him anone for to go, 
To make a playnte on Floripas. 1600 

She sued him as faste as she myghte go, 
For to gif him harde grace. 
With the keye cloge, fat she caugfit, 
With" goode wille she maute 1 than, 1604 

Such a stroke she hym ther 1 raught, 
The brayne sterte oute of his hede fan. 
To hire Fader forth she gotfc 

And saide " Sire, I telle you here, 1608 

I saugh a sight, that was me loth", 
Howe the fals Jaikwr fedde your prisoner 1 , 
1 Head: ( mente.' 



And how the covencmnte made was, 

Whan thai shulde delyuered be ; 1612 

Whereiore I slough" him with a mace. 

Dere Fadir, forgif it me ! " 

" My doghtir dere, that arte so free, 1 

The warde of hem now gif I the. 1616 

Loke, here sorowe be evere newe, 

Tille that Ferumbras delyuered be." 

She thanked her Fadere fele sithe 

And toke her maydyns, and forth she goth", 1620 

To the prisone she hyed hire swyth". 

The prison dore vp she dothe 

And saide " sires, what be ye, 

That make here this ruly moone ? 1624 

What you) lakkith, tellyth me ; 

For we be here nowe alle alone." 

Tho spake Eoulande with hevy chere 

To Floripe, that was bothe gente and fre, 1628 

And saide " lo, we two caytyfes here 

For defaute of mete dede moste be. 

vj dayes be comyn and goon, 

Sith we were loked in prison here, 1632 

That mete nor drinke hade we noon 

To comforte with oure hevy cher 1 . 

But woolde god of myghtes moost, 

The Sowdon wolde let vs oute goon, 1636 

We to fight with" alle his Ooste, 

To be slayn in feelde anoon. 

To murthir men for defaute of mete, 

It is grete shame tille a kinge ; 1640 

For every man most nedes ete, 

Or ellis may he do no thinge." 

Tho saide Floripe with wordes mylde, 

" I wolde fayne, ye were now here, 1644 

From harme skath 2 I wole you shelde, 

Head : l trew.' 2 Head : ' harme & skathe.' 

promising to 
deliver them ; 

wherefore she had 
slain him. 

The Soudan gives 
the prisoners into 
her guard. 

She now 
proceeded to the 

asked the 
prisoners what 
they wanted, 

and promised co 
protect them 
from any harm. 



She let down a 

[leaf 41] 

and drew up both, 

*nd led them to 
her apartments. 

There they ate, 
took a bath, 
and went to bed. 

The Soudan knew 
nothing of his 
prisoners being 
in Floripas' 


tells Guy that 

lie must go 

to the Soudan to 

demand the 

surrender of 

Roland and 


and of the relics 

of Rome. 

Naymes of 
Bavaria repre- 
sents that a 
messenger to the 
Soudan should 

And gife you mete with right gode cherV' 

A rope to hem she lete down goon, 

That aboveii was teyde faste. 1648 

She and hir maydyns drewe J?er vppon, 

Tille vp thay hadde hem at the last. 

She led hem into here chambir dere, 

That arrayed for hem was right wele, 1652 

Both Roulande and Olyvere, 

And gafe hem there a right gode mele. 

And whan thay hadde eten alle her fille, 

A bath for hem was redy there, 1 656 

Ther-to thay went ful fay re and stille, 

And aftyr to bedde with right gode cher\ 

Now Floripas chamber is here prisone, 

Withouten wetinge of the Sowdon ; 1660 

Thai were ful mery in that Dongeon, 

For of hem wiste mafi never oone. 

Now lete we hern be and mery make, 

Tille god sende hem gode delyueraunce. 1664 

Aftir the tyrne, fat thay were take, 

What did Charles, the kinge of Fraunce, 

Ther-of wole we speke nowe, 

Howe he cleped forth Sir Gy 1668 

And saide " on my message shaltowe, 

Therf ore make the faste redy, 

To bidde the Sowden sende me my Nevewes both 

And the Eeleqes also of Rome ; 1672 

Or I shal make him so wroth", 

He shaH not wete what to done. 

And by fat god, fat hath me wroght, 

I shal him leve Towre ner Town. 1676 

This bargan shal so dere be bought 

In dispite of his god Mahoun." 

DTJke Neymes of Bauer 1 vp stert than 
And saide " Sir, hastowe no mynde, 1680 

How the cursed Sow dan Laban 



Alle messengeris doth he shende 1 
Ye haue lost inowe, lese no mo 
Onworthily Olyuer* and Koulande." 
"By god, and thou shalt with him go, 
For al thy grete brode londe." 

THo Ogere Danoys, J?at worthy man, 
" Sir " he saide " be not wroth ! 
For he saitft south." " go thou) than ! 
By Gode thou shalte, be thou) never so loth." 
" A Sire " quod Bery Lardeneys, 

i\ " Thou) shalte hem se never more." 
JL JL_" Go thou forth in this same rees, 
Or it shalle the repente ful sore." 

FOlk Baliante saide to the kinge, 
" Liste ye youre Barons to lese ? "- 
" Certis, this is a wondir thinge ! 
Go thou also, thou) shalte not chese ! " 

ALeroyse rose vp anone 
And to the kinge pan gan he speke 
And saide " what thinke ye, sir, to done ? " 
" Dresse the forth with hem eke ! " 

MIron of Brabane spake an worde 
And saide " Sir, thou maiste do J>y wille. 1704 
Knowist thou not that cruel lorde, 
How he wole thy Barons spille ? " 
" Trusse the forth eke, sir Dasaberde, 
Or I shalle the sone make ! 
For of all thinge thou arte aferde, 
Yet arte thou) neyther hurte ner take." 

BIsshope Turpyfi kneled adown 
And saide " lege lorde, mercy ! " 
The kinge him swore by seynt Symon : 
" Thou goist eke, make the in hast redye ! " 

BErnarde of Spruwse, J?at worthy knyght, 
Saide " sir, avyse you) bette, 
Set not of youre Barons so light, 







certainly be 

and that they 
ought to be 
anxious not to 
lose any more 
besides Rouland 
and Oliver. 
Then said the 
[leaf 42] 
king, By god, 
thou shalt go 
with Guy.' 
Ogier the Dane 
remonstrates, but 
is ordered to 
go too. 

So arc Thierry 
of Ardane 

and Folk Baliant, 


and Miron of 




Bishop Turpin 

kneels down to 

implore the king's 


but he must go 


as well as 
Bernard of 



and Brier of 


The knights take 
leave and start. 

The Soudan 
assembled his 

Sortibrance and 

Thou maiste haue nede to hem yette." 
" Thou shalte goon eke for alle thy boost, 
Haue done and make the fast yare ! 
Of my nede gyfe thou) no coost, 
Ther-of haue thou right no care ! " 

BRyer* of Mounte^, J>at marqwy^ bolde, 
Was not aferde to him to speke. 
To the kinge sharply he tolde, 
His witte was not worth a leke : 
" Woltowe for Angre thy Barons sende 
To J>at Tiraunte, pat alle men sleith 1 
Or thou doist for fat ende, 
To bringe thy xij peres to the detft." 
The kinge was wroth and swore in halle 
By him, J?at boght him witfr his blode : 
" On my messange shall ye gon alle ! 
Be ye never so wroth" or wode." 
Thay toke here lefe and forth thay yede, 
It availed not agayne him to sayne. 
I pray, god gif hem gode spede ! 
Ful harde it was to comen agayn. 

NOwe let hem passe in goddis name, 
And speke we of the Sowdon, 
Howe he complayned him of his grame, 
And what that he myght beste done. 
" Sortybraunnce and Bronlande 1 " seyde he, 
" Of counsail ye be fulle wyse. 
How shal I do to avenge me 
Of kinge Charles, and in what wyse 1 
He brennyth my Toures and my Citees, 
And Burges he levethe me never oon. 
He stroieth my men, my londe, my fees. 
Thus shalle it not longe gOon. 
And yet me greveth most of alle, 
He hath made Ferumbras renay his laye. 
1 See the note. 












Therfore my counselors I calle, 

To remedy this, howe thay best maye. 

For me were lever that he were slayn, 

Thane he a Cristen hounde shulde be, 

Or with Wolfes be rente and slayn, 

By Mahounde myghty of dignyte." 

To answerde Sortybraunce and Eroulande 

And saide " gode counsaile we shal you) gyfen, 

If thoue wilte do aftyr covenawnte, 

It shal you) profit, while you) lyven. 

Take xij knightis of worthy dede 

And sende hem to Charles on message nowe. 

A-raye hem welle in roial wede, 

For thy honour* and for thy prowe. 

Bidde Charles sende thy sone to the 

And voyde thy londe in alle haste, 

Or ellis thou shalt him honge on a tre, 

As hye, as any shippes maste." 

" Nowe by Mahounde " quod Laban, 

" This counseil is both trewe and goode, 

I shalle him leve for no man 

To parforme this, though he wer* woode." 

He did his lettris write in haste, 

The knightes were called to goo Jjerwitn", 

That thay hy^e hem to Charles faste 

And charke 1 hym vppon life and lithe. 

Forth thai ride towarde Mantrible pan, 

In a medowe, was fayre and grene, 

Thai mette with Charles messageris ten. 

Duke Neymes axed hem, what thai wolde mene, 

And saide " Lordynges, whens come ye ? 

And whider ye are mente, telle vs this tyde." 

" From the worthy Sowdon " than saide he, 

" To Charles on message shalle we ride, 



advise him 

to send 12 
knights, and to 

1764 bid Charles 

[leaf 44] 

to give up 

IT/?O Ferumbras and to 
l/bfe withdraw from 

his country. 


1776 The knights are 

1780 Near Mantrible 
they meet with 
the Christian 

Duke Naymes 
i 17 o A m( l u i res whither 
1764: they intend to go. 

1 Sic in MS. Query 'charge.' 

E 2 



Having heard 
their message, 

the delegates of 
cut off their 
heads, which they 
take with them 
to present to the 
Soudan at 

[leaf 45] 

The Soudan was 
just dining. 

Naymes delivers 
his message : 

' God confound 
Laban and all 
his Saracens, 
and save Charles, 

who commands 
thee to send back 
his two nephews 
and to restore 
the relics.' 

Euel tithyngges we shalle him telle, 

Fro Laban, that is lorde of Spayne. 1788 

Farewele, felowes, we may not dwelle." 

" A-byde " quod. Gy " and turne agayne. 

We wole speke with you), er ye goon, 

For we be messengeris of his. 1792 

Ye shal aby everichone, 

So God brynge me to blis." 

Anoon here swerdes oute thay brayde 

And smoten down right al a-boute. 1796 

Tille the hethen were down layde, 

Thai reseyued many a sore cloute. 

Thai smyten of here hedes alle, 

Eche man toke one in his lappe. 1800 

Fal what so euer byfalle, 

To the Soudon wole they trappe. 

Tille thai come to Egremoure, 

Thai stynte for no worldes thinge ; 1804 

Anone thai fonde the Sawdan thore, 

At his mete proudely sittynge, 

And J>at maide fair 1 Dame Floripas 

And xiiij princes of grete price 1808 

And kinge Lukafer 1 of Baldas, 

Thas was both bolde, hardy and wyse. 

Doughty Duke Neymes of Bauer* 

To the Sowdone his message tolde 1812 

And saide "god, J>at made heven so cler*, 

He saue kinge Charles so bolde 

And confounde Laban and all his men, 

That on Mahounde byleved, 1 18 1C 

And gife hem evel endinge ! amen. 

To morue, longe er it be even, 

He coramaundith the vppon thy life 

His Nevewes home to him sende, 1820 

And the Religes 2 of Rome withoute strife ; 

1 Read: ( byleven.' 2 Read: 'reliqes.' 



And cllis getist thou an evel ende ! 

xij lurdeynes mette vs on the waye ; 

Thai saide, thay come streight fro the. 

Thai made it both" stoute and gay ; 

Here hed^6 here maistowe see. 

Thai saide, thai wolde to Charles goon, 

Evel tidingges him to telle. 

Loo here here heddis euerychone, 

Here soulis bene in helle." 

" " quod. Lavane " what may this be, 

To sunV this amonge my knights alle 1 

To be rebuked thus here of the 

At mete in myn owen halle ! 

To Mahounde myghty I make a vowe, 

Ye shall be hanged alle ten, 

Anoon as I have eten I-nowe, 

In presence of alle my men." 

Maide Floripas answered tho 

And saide " my derworth Fadir der* ! 

By my counsaile ye shal not so, 

Tille ye haue your Barons alle in fer*, 

That thai may se what is the best, 

For to delyuere my brother Sir Ferumbras. 

And aftirward, if J?at ye liste, 

Ye may gife hem ful evel grace." 

" Gramercy, doghter, thou saieste welle, 

Take hem alle into thy warde. 

Do feter hem faste in Irefi and stele 

And set hem in stray3te garde. 

Thus was I neuer rebukede er nowe ; 

Mahounde myghty gyfe hem sorowe ! 

Thay shalle be flayn and honged on a bowe, 

Longe ere tynie 1 to morowe." 

Florip toke these messangeris 

And ladde hem vp in-to here tour 1 , 

1 Read : ' I dyno.' See the note. 

They then 
produce the heads 
of the Soudan's 




The Soudan 
vowed a vow 
1836 that they should 
all ten be hange I 
as soon as he had 
finished hia 

But Floripas 
him to put off hia 
resolution, until 
a general council 
of his barons had 
determined on the 
best way of the 
liberation of 



[leaf 46] 

1348 The Soudan 

gives them into 
her guard. 


Floripas leads 
the knights into 
1856 lier tower, whore 



they were glad to 
find Roland and 

They told each 
other how they 
had fared. 

After washing, 

they dined off 
bread and wine, 

and then went to 

The following 
day, Floripas asks 
Naymes his 

and en'quires 
after Guy of 
[leaf 47] 

whom she had 
loved for a long 
time, and for 

There thai founde two of here feris. 
Thay thanked thereof god of honoure. 
Tho sayde Duke Neymys of Bauer* : 
"Gladde men we be no we here, 1860 

To fynde Roulande and Olyuer* 
In helthe of bodye and of goode cherV' 
Thai kissed eche other with herte gladde 
And thanked god of his grace ; 1864 

And eche toolde othir, howe thay sped hadde, 
And howe thay come in-to that place 
By helpe of mayde Florip hire self, 
" God kepe hir in honoure ! 1868 

For thus hath she brought vs hider alle twelfe, 
To dwelle in hir owen boure." 
Tho thay wessh and wente to mete, 
And were served welle ancl fyne 1872 

Of suche goode, as she niyght gete, 
Of Venyson, brede and gode wyne. 
There thai were gladde and wel at ease ; 
The Soudon ne wist it noght. 1876 

Aftyr thay slepe and toke her ese, 
Of no man than thay ne roght. 
On the morowe Florip, that mayde fre, 
To Duke Neymes spake in game : 1880 

" Sir gentil knight," tho saide she, 
" Telle me, what is your name." 
" Whi axe ye, my lady dere, 

My name here to knowe alle ? " 1884 

" For he 1 spake with so bolde chere 
To my Fadir yestirdaye in his halle. , 
Be not ye the Duke of Burgoyne, sir Gy, 
Nevewe unto the kinge Charles so fre ? " 1888 

" Noe, certes, lady, it is not I, 
It is yondir knight, J?at ye may see." 
" A, him have I loved many a day ; 
' Sic in MS. Mead: 'ye.' 



And yet knowe I him noght. 

For his loue I do alle that I maye, 

To chere you) with dede and thought. 

For his love wille I cristenede be 

And lefe Mahoundes laye. 

Spekith to him nowe for me, 

As I you) truste maye ; 

And but he wole graunte me his loue, 

Of you) askape shalle none here. 

By him, )>at is almyghty aboue, 

Ye shalle abye it ellis ful dere." 

Tho wente Duke Neymes to Sir Gye 

And saide " This ladye lovetfc the, 

For thy loue she maketfr us alle merye, 

And Baptizede wole she be. 

Ye shalle hir take to your wedded wife, 

For alle vs she may saue." 

" By God " quod Gye " fat gafe me life, 

Hire wole I never haue, 

Wyle I neuer take hire ner no woman, 

But Charles the kinge hir me gife. 

I hight him, as I was trewe man, 

To holden it, while I lyve." 

Tho spake Roulande and Olyuer 1 , 

Certyfyinge him of her* myschefe, 

Tellinge him of the parelles, j>at ]?ay in wer*, 

For to take this lady to his wedded wife. 

" But thou) helpe in this nede, 

"We be here in grete doute. 

Almyghty god shalle quyte thy mede, 

Elles come we nevere hewnys oute." 

Thus thay treted him to and fro ; 

At the laste he sayde, he wolde. 

Floripas thay cleped forth tho ; 

And brought fourth a Cuppe of golde, 

Ful of noble myghty wyne, 



whom she would 
do all she could 
lor their benefit, 

and would be 

if he would agree 
to love her in 
1900 return. 

1904 Naymes tells Guy 


to take her for 
his wife, 

but Guy refuses, 

as he never will 
take a wife, 
1912 unless she be 
given him by 

Hoiiiand and 
Olirer persuaded 

1916 him. 


1924 so that he at 
last consented. 

Floripas, holding 
a golden cup of 


[ieaf48j And saide "my loue and my lorde, 1928 

Myn herte, my body, my goode is thyn," 
kissed him, And kissed him witfi that worde, 
and requested And " sir " she saide " drinke to rue, 

him to drink to 

her after the As the Gyse is of my londe : 1932 

fashion of her 

country. And I shalle drinke agayn to the. 

She also drinks to 

him. As to my worthy hosbonde. 

Thay clipped and kissed both in fere 
They an make And made grete Joye and game, 1936 

And so did alle, that were ther 1 , 

Thai made ful mery alle in same. 

Tho spake Floripas to the Barons boolde 

And saide " I haue armur 1 1-nowe ; 1940 

Therfore I tel you), what I wolde, 

And fat ye dide for your prowe. 
For the Mowing To morue, whan my Fadir is at his souper 1 , 

Ye shalle come in alle attonys ; 1944 

Loke ye spare for no fere, 

Sle down and breke both bake and bones ; 

Kithe you) knightis of hardynesse ! 

Ther is none helpe, but in this wyse, 1948 

Then moste ye shewen youre prowes, 

And wynne this Castel in this guyse." 

Thai sayden alle, it was welle saide, 

And gladde thay were of this counsaile. 1952 

they aii prepare Here armur 1 was forth layde, 

to assail the 

Soudan at supper. At souper the Sowdon to assaile. 
Lukafer comes Kinge Lucaf ere prayde the Sawdon, 

to the Soudan 

and asks leave to That he wolde gif him lysence, 1956 

see the prisoners, . 

in order to know lo the prisoners lor to goon, 

the manner of m , , , 

their detention. To see the inaner of her presence. 

He gafe him lefe, and forth he wente 

Yp vnto Floripas Toure. 1960 

To asspie the maner was his entenf, 

Hem to accuse agayne honoure. 

Whan he come, he founde the dore fast I-stoke, 


He smote there-on with his fist. 19G4 open with a blow 

of his fist. 

That the barr began to broke. 

To make debate, wel him list. 

" Who artowe " qwod Floripas x 

" ])at maketh hex* sucfr araye l ? " 1968 

"I am kinge Lucafere of Baldas, [leaf 493 

The Sowdon sente me hidir in faye ; 

To seen his prisoneris is my desire 

And speke with hem everychon, 1972 Hetoidthem 

To talke with hem by the fire come to speak to 

And speke of dedis of Armes amonge." 

Tho saide Duke Neymes " welcome be ye 

To us prisoners here ! 1976 

What is your wille, nowe telle ye ; 

For we be men of feble chere." 

" I woolde wete of Charles the kinge, and to enquire 

What man he is in his contre, 1980 Charlemagne. 

And what meyne he hath, and of what thinge 

He rekyneth moost his dignyte." 

Duke Neymes saide " an Emperoure Duke Naymes 

And kinge he is of many a londe, 1984 a ' 

Of Citeis, Castels, and many a Toure, 

Dukes, Erles, Barons bowynge to his honde." 

" But saye me, felowe, what is your vse, 

To do in contr* aftyr the none. 1988 He then asks 

,,,.,.. /, , what amusements 

And what is the custome of your hous, they have after 

Tille men to souper shalle gone ? " 

" Sir, somme men iouste 2 with sper* and shelde, Naymes says, 

And somme men Carol and singe gode songes, 1992 

Some shote with dartis in the feelde, 

And somme play at Chesse amonge." 

" Ye bene but foulis of gode dissporte ; 

I wole you) tech a newe play. 1996 'iwiii teach you 

ci-i. i i T a new game,' says 

bitte down here by one assorte, Lukafer. 

1 These two lines are written as one in the MS. 
3 MS. iuste. 



With a thread he 
fastened a needle 
on a pole and 
put a burning 
coal upon it. 

He blew it at 
Naymes's beard 
and burnt it. 

Naymea waxed 
wroth, and 

[leaf 50] 
snatching a 
burning brand 
from the fire 

he smites at 
Lukater and 
throws him into 
the fire, 

where he was 
roasted to 

applauds this, 


points out their 


and advises them 
to arm. 

At supper time 
she goes to her 

And better myrthc never ye sayc." 
He teyde a tredde on a pole 

With an nedil ther-on I-fest, 2000 

And ther vppoii a qwik 1 cole. 
He bade every man blowe his blast. 
Duke Neymes hade a long berde, 

Kinge Lucafer* blewe even to hym, 2004 

That game hade he never before lered. 
He brent the her* of Neymes berde. to the skync. 
Duke Neymes than gan wex wroth", 
For he hade brente his berde so white 2008 

To the Chymneye forth he goth 
And caught a bronde him with" to smyte. 
With a goode wille he him smote, 
That both his eyen bresten oute. 2012 

He caste him in the fire al hote ; 
For so the he hadde a right gode cloute. 
And with a fyre forke he helde him doune, 
Tille he were rosted to colis ilkadele. 2016 

His soule hade his god Mahouii. 
Florip bade him warme him wele. 
" Sires " tho saide Floripas, 

" Entendith nowe al to me ! 2020 

This Lucafer> of Baldas 
Was a lorde of grete mayne. 
My Fadir hade him euer yn cher* 
I telle you for so the every dele, 2024 

He wolde anoon aftyr him enquer*, 
And therefore loke, ye arme you weft ! " 
Florip wente in, as the maner was, 
To here Fadir at souper tyme. 2028 

"No man spake worde of kinge Baldas, 
Jtfer no man knewe of his sharp pyne. 
The xij peris armed hem wel and fyne 
With swerdes drawe and egr 1 chore. 2032 

While thay uiery 1 drinkyng 1 the wyne 
1 Miswrittcnfor 'were'? 


And sittinge alle at here souper*. dtthi^auabie 

Thai reheted the Sowdon and his Barons alle the twelve peers 

rushed in and 

And maden orders wondir fast, 2036 8 iew aii whom 

Thai slowe down alle, J>at were in the halle, 
And made hem wondirly sore a-gast. 

Olyvere egerly sued Laban b ab oiiver Ur8Ued 

With swerd I-drawe in his honde. 2040 

Oute at the wyndowe lepte he ban jumps out of a 

window on to the 

Vppon the salte see stronde, 1 seu-shore and 


And he skaped away from hime, 

But woo was he Jjerfore, 2044 

That he went awaye witfr lym without injury. 

To worche hem sorowe more. 

Roulande than came rennynge 

And axed, where was Laban. 2048 

Olyuere answerede moornynge [leaf si] 

And saide, howe he was agoon. 

Tho thai voided the Courtes at the last They killed all in 

the castle, 

And slowen tho, that wolde a-byde, 2052 

And drewe the brigge and teyed it fast, 

And shitte the gatis, that were so wyde. 8hut the g ates - 

Laban, that by the ebbe escaped e, 

Of harde, er he come to londe, 205 G 

He alle astonyed and a-mapide, 2 

For sorowe he wronge botn" his honde 

And made a vowe to Mahounde of myght, Laban vowed a 

He wolde that Cite wynne 2060 

And never go thens by day nor nyght, 

For foo, for frende, ner for kynne. 

" And tho traytouris will I do honge, that he would 

hung them all 

On a Galowes hye with-oute the gate ; 2064 

And my Doghter. bat hore stronge, and burn his 


I-brente shal be there-ate. 

To mauntryble he gan sende anoon He sent to 

Mantrible for 

Aftir men and tentis goode, 2068 troops and 

1 MS. strowde. 3 Mead: 'a-wapide.' 




and besieged 

Floripas recom- 
mends the peers 

to enjoy them- 

[leaf 52] 

In the morning 
the soudan 
attacks the 

but is repulsed. 

And Engyncs to thro we with stoon 
And goode armin-' many foolde. 
The sege he did ley en a-bowte 

On every side of that Cite. 2072 

To wallis with Engynes thai gan rowte, 
To broke the Toures so fre. 
Tho saide Florip, " lordingges goode, 
Ye bene biseged in this toure, 2076 

As ye bene wight of mayne and moode, 
Proveth here to sane youre honour 1 . 
The toure is stronge, drede you) nought, 
And vitayle we have plente. 2080 

Charles wole not leve you) vnsought ; 
Truste ye welle alle to me. 
Therefore go we soupe and make merye, 
And takith ye alle your ease ; 2084 

And xxx* 1 maydens lo here of Assyne, 1 
The fayrest of hem ye chese. 
Take your sporte, and kith you) knyghtes, 
Whan ye shalle haue to done ; 2088 

For to morowe, when the day is light, 
Ye mooste to the wallis goon 
And defende this place with caste of stoon 
And with shotte of quarelles and darte. 2092 

My maydyns and I shall bringe goode wone, 
So eueryche of us shalle bere hir parte." 
On morowe the Sowdon made assaute 
To hem, that were with-Inne, 2096 

And certes in hem was no defaute, 
For of hem myght thay nought wynne. 
Here shotte, here cast was so harde, 
Thay durste not ny$he the walle. 2100 

Thay drowen hem bakwarde, 
Thay were beten over alle. 
King Laban turnede to his tentes agayn, 
1 Read: 'Assye.' 



He was nere wode for tene, 2104 

He cryede to Mahounde and Apolyne 

And to Termagaunte, fat was so kene, 

And saide " ye goddes, ye slepe to longe, 

Awake and helpe me nowe, 2108 

Or ellis I may singe of sorowe a songe, 

And of mournynge right I-nowe. 

Wete ye not wele, that my tresoure 

Is alle witfi-iune the walle ? 2112 

Helpe me nowe, I saye therfore, 

Or ellis I forsake you) alle." 

He made grete lamentacion, 

His goddis byganne to shake. 2116 

Yet that comfortede his meditacion, 

Supposinge thay didde awake. 

He cleped Brenlande to aske counsaile, 

What was beste to done, 2120 

And what t hinge myght him moste avayle, 

To wynne the Cite sone. 

" Thou wotist welle, fat alle my tresour 

Is there in here kepinge, 2124 

And my doughter, fat stronge hore, 

God yif her evelle endyng 1 ! " 

" Sir " he saide " ye knowe welle, 

That Toure is wondir stronge. 2128 

While fay haue vitayle to mele, 

Kepen it thay wole fulle longe. 

Sende to Mauntreble, your* cheif Cite, 

That is the keye of this londe, 2132 

That non passe, where it so be, 

With-oute youre speciall sonde, 

To Alagolofur 1 , fat geaunte stronge, 

That is wardeyne of fat pas, 2136 

That no man passe that brigge alonge, 

But he have special grace. 

So shall e not Charles with his meyne 

He accuses his 
gods of sleepiness, 
and shakes them 
to wake up. 

[leaf 53] 

as the castle is 
strong and well 
stored with pro- 
visions, the peera 
will hold it very 

but if he would 
send orders to 
Alagolafre, the 
bridge-keeper at 
not to allow any 
one to pass 
without leave, 



they would get no 
assistance from 
and die from 

Espiard is 
despatched to 

and commands 
the giant 

not to suffer any 
one to pass the 

Reskowe than Agramoure. 2140 

Than thay shalle enfamyched be, 
That shalle hem rewe ful sore." 
" Mahoundis blessynge have thou) and myne, 
Sortybraunce, for thy rede." 2144 

" Espyarde, messanger 1 myne, 
In haste thou most the spede 
To my Cite Mavntreble, 

To do my message there, 2148 

To Alogolofr 1 , j?at giaunte orrible. 
Bydde him his charge wele lere, 
And tel him, howe that the last daye 
Ten fals traytowrs of Fraunce 2152 

Passed by that same waye 
By his defaute with myschaunce, 
Charginge him vppon his hede to lese, 
That no man by the brigge, 1 2156 

Be it rayne, snowe or freze, 
But he his heede down ligge." 
Espiarde spedde him in his waye, 
Tille he to Mauntrible came, 2160 

To seke the geaunte, ther he laye 
On the banke bysyde the Dame, 
And saide " the worthy Sowdon, 
That of alle Spayn is lorde and stf, 2164 

Vppon thy life commaurideth the anoon, 
To deserue better thyn hire. 
The laste day thou) letist here passe 
Ten trattoures of douse Fraunce. 2168 

God gifte the evel grace, 
And hem also moche myschaunce 1 
He charged the vppon life and detfi, 
To kepe this place sikerlye ; 2172 

While in thy body lastetfr the bretR, 
Lette noon enemye passe ther'-bye." 
1 See tlie note. 


Alagolofur rolled his yen 

And smote with his axe on the stone 

And swore by Termagcmnte and Apolyne, 

That ther-by shulde passes never one, 

But if he smote of his hede, 

And brought it to his lorde Labafi, 

He wolde never ete no brede, 

]N"ere never loke more on man. 

xxiiij* 1 Cheynes he didde ouer-drawe, 

That noo man passe myght, 

Neyther for loue nere for awe, 

No tyme by daye, nere by nyghte. 

" Go, telle my lorde, I shalle it kepe ; 

On payne of my grete heede 

Shalle ther no man goo ner crepe, 

But he be take or dede." 

This geaunte hade a body longe 

And hede, like an libarde. 

Ther-to he was devely stronge, 

His skynne was blake and harde. 

Of Ethiope he was bore, 

Of the kinde of Ascopartes. 

He hade tuskes, like a bore, 

An hede, like a liberde. 

Laban nolde not forgete 

The saute to renewe, 1 

To wynne the Toure, he wolde not lete. 

Here trumpes lowde thay blewe. 

Every man wente to the walle, 

With pikeys or with bowe. 

Thai made assaute generalle, 

The walles downe to throwe. 

But thay witfr-inne bare hem soo, 

Thay slowe of the Saresyns iij hundred?. 

Thay wroghten hem both care and woo, 

1 These tmo lines are written as one in the MS. 



Alagolafre drew 
24 chains across 
2184 the bridge. 




The soudati 

assaults the 

2200 castle again. 

2204 [leaf 55] 


but the 12 peers 
slay 300 Saracens. 


Laban threatens 
to hang them, and 
utters impreca- 

against Floripas, 
who returns 

The soudan calls 
for Mavon, his 
engineer, and 
orders him to 
direct a mangonel 
against the walls. 

Mavon knocked 


a piece of the 


Roland and 
Oliver lament : 

they are com- 
forted by 

Vppon her fightinge thay wondride. 
Tho cryed Laban to hem on hye, 

" Traytowrs, yelde you) to me, 2212 

Ye shall be hongede els by and bye 
Vppon an hye Galowe tree." 
Tho spake Florip to the Sowdon 

And sayde " thou fals tyraunte, 2216 

Were Charles come, thy pride wer* done 
No we, cursede myscreaunte. 
Alas ! that thou ascapediste soo 

By the wyndowe vppon the stronde. 2220 

That thy nek 1 hade broke a-tvvoo ! 
God sende the shame and shonde ! " 
" A ! stronge hore, god gife the sorowe ! 
Tho[u] venemouse serpente. 2224 

Withe wilde horses 1 thou) shalt be drawe to morowe, 
And on this hille be brente, 
That al men may be war 1 by the, 
That cursed bene of kynde. 2228 

And thy love shalle honged be, 
His hondes bouwde him byhynde." 
He called forth Mavon, his Engynour 1 , 
And saide "I charge the, 2232 

To throwe a magnelle to yon tour 1 , 
And breke it downe on thre." 
Mavon set vp his engyne 

With a stoon of .vj. C wight, 2236 

That wente as even as eny lyne, 
And smote a Cornell down right. 
Woo was Roulande and Olyuer*, 

That fat myschief was be-falle, 2240 

And so were alle the xij peres ; 
But Florip than comforte hem alle : 
" Sires " she saide " beith of goode chere ! 
This Toure is stronge I-nowe. 2244 

1 See the note. 


He may cast twies or thries or lie hit ayen Jjer, 1 [leaf 56] 

For sothe I telle it you). 

Marsedage, the roialle kinge, 

Rode in riche weede, 2248 

Fro Barbary commyng, 

Vppon a sturdy stede, 

Cryinge to hem vppofi the walle : 

" Traytowris, yelde you) here ! 2252 

Brenne you alle ellis I shalle, 

By myghty god lubyterV' 

Gy aspied, that he came ner\ Guy wiis 

Marsedage the 

A darte to hime he threwe ful even. 2256 king of Barbary, 

He smote him throwe herte & liver in fer 1 . dart at him. 

Dame Floripe lough with loude steven 

And saide " Sir Gye, my loue so free, 

Thou kanste welle hit the prikke. 2260 

He shall make no booste in his contre ; 

God giffe him sorowe thikke ! " 

Whan Laban herde of this myschief 1 , 

A sory man was he. 2264 

He trumped, his mene to relefe: They stop tiw 


For to cease that tyme mente he. 

Mersadage, kinge of Barbarye, 

He did carye to his tente, 2268 

And beryed him by right of Sarsenye to bury Marse- 

VVith brennynge fire and riche oynemente, 

And songe the Dirige of Alkaron, 

That bibill is of here laye, 2272 

And wayled his deth everychon, and bewail him 

7 days and nights. 

vij nyghtis and vij dayes. 

AnOOfi the Sowdofi, SOUth tO Say, Then the soudan 

more closely 

bente nj hundrid of knightis, 2276 blockades the 

To kepe the brigge and the waye 

Cute of that Castil rightis, 

That noon of hem shulde issue oute, 

1 Sec the note. 


[leaf 57] 

The provisions 
lieing exhausted, 

Roland complains 
of Charles's 
forget fulness ; 

but Floripas 
cheers him up, 

saying she pos- 
sessed a magic 
girdle which was 
a talisman 
against hunger 
and thirst for 
those who wore 

They all suc- 
cessively put it 
on and felt as if 
they liinl 


To feche vitayle by no waye. 2280 

He charged hem to wacche wel aH abowte, 

That thay for-famelid' myght dye. 

Thus thay kepte the place vij dayes, 

Tille alle hire vitaile was ny}e spente. 2284 

The yates thai pas the streyte weyes. 

Tho helde thai hem with-in I-shente. 

Tho spake Roulande with hevy chere 

Woordes lamentable, 2288 

Whan he saugh the ladies so whi^te of ler ) , 

Faile brede on here table, 

And saide " Charles, thou) curteys kinge, 

Why forgetist thou) vs so longe? 2292 

This is to me a wondir thinge ; 

Me think itli, thou doiste vs grete wronge, 

To let vs dye for faute of mete, 

Closed thus in a dongeon. 22-96 

To morowe wol we asaye what we kon gete, 

By god, that berithe the crown." 

Tho saide Floripas " sires, drede noghte 

For noon houngr' that may befalle. 2300 

I knowe a medycyne in rny thoughte 

To comforte you) with. alle. 

I have a girdil in my Forcer 5 , 

Who so girde hem ther-with aboute, 2304 

Hunger ner thirste shal him neuer dere, 

Though he were vij yere witfr-oute." 

" " qziod Sir Gy " my loue so trewe, 

I-blessed mote ye be ! 2308 

I pray you), that ye wole us alle hit shewe, 

That we may haue oure saule. 

She yede and set it forth anoon, 

Thai proved alle the vertue, 2312 

And diden it aboute hem euerychoii. 

It comforted alle both moo and fewe, 

As thai hade bene at a feste. 



So were thay alle wele at ease, 

Thus were thai refresshed botfi moost & lest 

And weren "bifore in grete disese. 

Laban wondred, how thai myght endur 1 

Witft-outen vitaile so longe. 

He remewbred him on Floripas senctur*, 

And of the vertue so stronge. 

Tho wiste he welle, that throgh" famyne 

Might he hem never wynne. 

He cleped to him fals Mapyne, 

For he coude many a fals gynne : 

He coude scale Castel and Toure 

And over the walles wende. 

" Mapyne " he saide " for myn honoure, 

Thou inooste haue this in mynde : 

That hore, my doghter, a girdil hatn" she, 

From hounger it savyth hem alle, 

That wonnen may thay never be, 

That foule mote hir bifalle ! 

Kanstowe gete me that gyrdill by craft, 

A thousande pounde than shal I gefe the ; 

So that it be there not lefte, 1 

But bringe it hithir* to me. 

Thou) kanste see by nyghte as welle 

As any man doth by daye. 

Whan thay bene in here beddes ful stiH, 

Than go forth thider right in thy waye. 

Thou shalt it in here Chamber fynde, 

Thou maist be thereofe sure." 

" Sir, there- to I wole me bynde, 

If my life may endure." 

Forth wente this fals Mapyne 

By nyght into the Tour 1 

God gife him evel endinge ! 

Euen in to Floripas bour 1 . 

1 Read: 'lafte.' 


Laban wondered 
at their endur- 
2320 ance, 

but at last 
remembering the 







[leaf 58] 

he induced 

to attempt to 
steal it at night. 


Mapyne entered 
the chamber of 
Floripas through 

F 2 



a chimney ; 

he finds the 
girdle and puts 
it on, 

Out Floripas 
perceives him 

and cries out. 

Roland hurries 
to her assistance, 
[leaf 59] 

cuts off Mapine's 
head, and throws 
him out through 
the window 
without noticing 
the girdle. 

Floripas, seeing 
her girdle lost, 
is much grieved ; 

Roland comforts 

They agree to 
attempt a sally 
to obtain food. 

By a Chemney he wente inne ; 

Fulle stilly there he soughte it. 2352 

He it fofcnde and girde it aboute him, 

And aftyr ful dere lie bogfit it ; 

For by the light of a lampe ther* 

Floripas gan him aspye, 2356 

Alle a-frayed oute of hir slepe for fere, 

But lowde than gan she crye 

And saide " a thefe is in my boure, 

Robbe me he wole or sloo." 2360 

Ther-with come Rouland fro his tour* 

To wete of hir woo. 

He founde Mapyne bysyde hir bedde, 

Stondinge amased for drede, 2364 

To the wyndowe he him ladde, 1 

And there he smote of his hedde, 

And caste him oute in-to the see. 

Of the gyrdille was he not war 1 ; 2368 

But whan he wist, the girdel hade he, 

Tho hadde he sorowe and care. 

Floripe to the Cheste wente 

And aspyed, hire gyrdel was goon, 2372 

" Alas ! " she saide, " alle is it shente ! 

Sir, what haue ye done ? 

He hath my girdel aboute hym. 

Alas ! fat harde while ! 2376 

A rebelle hounde doth ofte grete tene ; 

Howe be we alle begilede." 

Tho spake Roulande with cher* boolde, 

"Dameselle! beytfc noughte aferde ! 2380 

If any vitaile be aboute this hoolde, 

"We wole hem wynne withe dinte of swcrde 

To morowe wole wee oute-goon 

And assaye, ho we it wole it be. 2384 

I make a vowe to god alone, 

1 Sec the noie. 


Assaile hem wole we ! 

And if thay haue any mete, 

Parte withe hem wole we. 2388 

Or elles strokes thay shal gete 

By God and seynte Mary myn avour 1 ! l 

In the morne. er the larke songe, in the morning 

Thai ordeynede hem to ride 2392 

To the Saresyns, J?at hade so longe 

Leyen hem besyde. 

Duke JSTeymes and Oger 1 Naymesand 

Ogier remain in 

Were ordeynede to kepe the place. 2396 thecastie, 
The x othir of the xij peres Uie others start 

Wente oute to assaye here grace. 
Thay foimden hem in lodges slepynge, and surprise the 

Saracens still 

Of hem hade thay no thought. 2400 sleeping in their 

Thai slowen down fat came to honde, 

Mahounde availed hem noghte. [leaf 60j 

In shorte tyme the ende was made, 

Thay ten slough iij hundred ther ) . 2404 They slew soo 

... an( i carried off as 

Tho founde thai vitaile, thay were glad, much food as 

. 1,11 they could bear. 

As moche as thay myghte home bei . 

Duke Neymes and Oger>, that kept the tour 1 , 

Say hem with here praye. 2408 

Thai thanked god hye 'of honoure, 

That thai spedde so J>at day. 

Thay avaled the brigge and lete him yn, 

Florip and here maydyns were gladde, 2412 

And so were thay, that were with-yn ; 

For alle grete hounger thay haddt?. 

Thai eten and dronken right I-nowe 

And made inyrth" ever amougu. 2416 

But of the Sowdon laban speke we nowe, 

Howe of sorowe was his songe. 

WHan tidyngges came to him, 
That his men were slayfi, 2420 

And howe thai hade stuffed hem also 1 
1 See the note. 



The soudan is 


and is going to 
bum bis gods, 

[leaf 61] 

be sacrifices 

and is assoiled by 
the priests. 

Laban holds 

With vitaile in agayne, 

For sorowe he woxe nere wode. 

He cleped Brenlande and Sortybraunce. 2424 

And tolde hem with angry mode 

Of his harde myschaunce. 

" Kemedye ordeyne me, 

Ye be chief of my counsaile ; 2428 

That I of hem may vengede be, 

It shalle you bouth availe. 

ye goddes, ye faile at nede, 

That I have honoured so longe, 2432 

1 shalle you) bren, so mote 1 I spede, 
In a fayre fyre ful stronge ; 
Shalle I neuer more on you) bileve, 

But renaye you) playnly alle. 2436 

Ye shalle be brente this day er eve, 
That f oule mote you) befalle ! " 
The fire was made, the goddes were broght 
To have be caste ther'-inne. 2440 

Tho alle his counsaile him by-sought, 
He shulde of fat erroure blynne, 
And saide " Sir, what wole ye done ? 
Wole ye your goddis for-sake ? 244V- 

Vengeaunce shalle than on you) come, 
With sorowe, woo and wrake ! 
Ye moste make offrynge for youre offence, 
For drede of grete vengeaunce, 2448 

With oyle, mylke and ffrankencense 
By youre prestis ordynaunce." 
Tho he dide bere hem in ayen, 

And to hem made dewe offerynge. 2452 

The prestis assoyled him of fat synne, 
Ful lowly for him prayinge. 
Tho he cleped his counselers 

Brulande and Sortybraunce, 2456 

1 MS. mete. 


Axynge, ho we he myght destroys the xij peres, 

That Mahounde gife hem myschaunce. 

Thay cowde no more ther-on, 

But late saile ayeii the toure. 2460 

With xx 11 thousande thai gan goil, 

And bigo?me a newe shoure A new assault 


To breke down the Walles, 

With mattokes and with pike, 2464 

Tille iiii hundred of hem alle but the ditches 

are filled with 

Lay slayne in the dike. assailants, who 

were slain by the 

So stroiige was the cast of stoone. showers of stone* 

~ , n hurled down by 

The Saresyns drewe hem abakke, 2468 the peers. 

, . The Saracens 

Tille it was at hye none ; retire. 

Tho go?me thay ayeii to shake. A second attack 


Tho fay led hem cast, J?at were wtt/t-inne ; There being u> 

Tho cowde thai no rede, 2472 

For stoone was ther noone to wymie. 

Tho were thay in grete drede. 

Than saide Florip, " beith not dismayde ! 

Ye shalle be holpe anoon. 2476 

Here is syluer vessel and now," l she sayde, rioripas gave 

them her father's 

" That shulle ye prove goode Avoon." silver and gold 

to cast amongst 

She set it forth, thay caste oute iaste the assailants. 

Alle that came to honde. 2480 Pf 

Off siluer and goolde vessel thay made waste 

That wast 2 down vppon the sonde. 

Whan thai saugh that roial sight, 

Thai leften alle here dede ; 2484 

And for the tresoure thay do fight, 

Who so myghte it awey lede. 

Tho the Sowdon wexe nere wode, Tfa e soudan in 

alarm for his 

Seinge this tresoure thus dispoyledl, 2488 treasure 

That was to him so dere and goode 

Laye in the dike thus defouled'. 

He bade that thai shulde leue gives up the 

1 ? I now. 2 It cad : 'went.' 



He is enraged 
with his gods, 

and smites 

so that he fell on 
his face ; 

but the priests 
induce him 

[leaf 63] 

to kneel down 
and ask forgive- 

And turne hem agayne in haste. 2492 

He wente home tille his tente than 
With grete sorowe and mournyng 1 mode. 
To-fore his goddis whan he came, 

He cryed, as he were wode : 2496 

" fals goddis, that y e beth, 
I have trustid to longe youre mode. 
We 1 were lever* to sufiY dede, 

Than lif this life here lenger no we. 2500 

I haue almoste loste the bretfi, 
xij fals traytozws me overe-lede, 
And s troy en alle fat I haue. 

Ye fals goddis, the devel youe spede ! 2504 

Ye make me nowe for to rave ; 
Ye do fayle me at my nede." 
In Ire he smote Mahounde, 

That was of goolde fulle rede, 2508 

That he fille down to the grounde, 
As he hade bene dede. 
Alle here bisshopes cryderi oute 

And saide " Mahounde, thyn ore ! " 2512 

And down to the erthe wele lowe thay loute, 
Howlynge and wepynge sore, 
And saide " Sire Sowdon, what haue ye done 1 
Vengeaunce shalle on the falle, 2516 

But thou) repente the here anone." 
" Ye " qwod he " I shrewe you) alle ! " 
Thai made a fyre of frankincense 
And blewen homes of bras, 2520 

And casten in milke hony for the offence, 
To-fore Mahoundes face. 
Thay counsailed Laban to knele a down 
And aske forgevenes in that place. 2524 

And so he didde and hade pardon 
Throgh prayere and specialle grace. 
1 ? Me. 


Then l this was done, ban sayde Eoulande Meanwhile 


To his Felowes xj : 2528 

u Here may we not longe holde londe, 

By God that is in he veil. 

Therefore sende we to Charles, the kinge, 

That he wolde reskowe vs sone ; 2532 

And certyfye him of 1 oure straygte beinge, exhorted Richard 

of Normandy to 

If ye thinke, it be to done. go on message to 

Charles, that he 

Kichard of Normandye, ye most goon, might come to 

I holde you) both wyse and hende. 2536 

And we shalle tomorowe, as stil as stoon, They an would 

the following 

The Saresyns a- wake, er ye wynde. 2 morning, before 

, day break, make 

And while we be mooste bysy in oure werke, an attack on the 

Saracens, and 

And medel with hem alle in fere, 2540 meanwhile he 

should steal off in 

Stele ye a-waye in the derke ! _ the darkness. 

And spede you faste, ye were there ! " 

On the morowe aftir* the daye in the morning 

Thay w r ere armede ful ryghte, 2544 

Thai rode forth stilly in here way, they saiiy out. 

God gouerne hem, mooste of myght ! 

Floripe and here maydyns kept the tour* Fioripas and her 

maidens draw up 

And woonde vp the brigges on hye, 2548 the bridges after 

And prayde god, to kepe here paramour 1 , 

The Duke of Burgoyne, Sir Gye. 

She preyde to Rouland, er he wente, 

To take goode hede of him, 2552 

That he were neyfer take nere shente, 

As he wolde her loue wynne. 

On thay set with herte stronge 

And alle hem sore afrayed. 2556 

Richard the whiles away he wronge, Richard went oa 

Thile 3 thai were alle dismayede. MantrtbU. 

Towarde the Mountrible he hyed him faste, 

To passe, if that he myghte. 2560 

Thedir he came at the laste. 

1 ?'When.' * Mead: 'wende.' 3 ?' while.' 



The others slay 
many Saracens ; 

bnt Guy, 
overpowered by 
the Babylonians, 
is taken 

Laban asks his 

Guy tells him. 

He is to be 

m> Saracens 
crowding near 
the gate of the 

attempted to 
prevent the other 
peers from 

A fearful struggle 

God kepe him for his mocli myght 1 
His xij i felowes besyed hem soo 

That many of hem thay sloughe. 2 2564 

Gye slowe the kinge of Babyloyne tho ; 
The Babyloynes of his hors him drowe, 
And with force him drowe there 

And bounde his hondes fill fast. 2568 

A newe game thai gan him lere, 
For in depe prison thay him caste. 
But Laban wolde him first se, 

To wete what he was. 2572 

" Telle me thy name iiowe " qod he, 
" Thy songe shalle be ' alas.' " 
" Sire " he saide " my name is Gye, 
I wole it never forsake. 2576 

It were to me grete vilanye 
An othir name to take." 
" fals tray tow " qwod Labaii, 

" My doghtir, J>at stronge hore, 2580 

Hath me for-sake and the hath tan, 
Thou) shalte be honged therfore." 
Roulande made grete moone, 

It wolde noon other be. 2584 

Homwarde thai gan goon, 
.iij.c Saresyns ther saye he, 
That kepte the pace at the brigge-ende, 
Armed wel in goode araye, 2588 

That thai sholde not in wende, 
But be take or slayfi pat daye. 
Roulande to his felowes saide : 

" Beth alle of right gode chere ! 2592 

And we shal make hem alle afrayde, 
Er* we go to oure soupere." 

There byganne a bykeringe bolde 
Of x Bachelors that tyde, 2596 

1 ? xj. 2 See the note. 


Agayne iijc men I-tolde, 

That durste righte wel a-byde. 

Tho was Durnedale set a werke, 

XL of hethen he sloughe, 2600 

He spared ne^er* lewde ner clerke, 

And Floripas thereof loughe. 

The shotte, the caste was so stronge, 

Syr Bryer was slayn there 

With dartes, gauylokes and speres longe, 

xx" on hym there were. 

Roulande was woo and Olyuer*, 

Thay sloughen alle that thai mette. 2608 

Tho fledde the Turkes alle for fer>, 

Thay durste no longer lette 

And saide, thai wer 1 no men, 

But develis abroken oute of helle, 2612 

" .iij. hundred of vs agayn hem ten. 

Oure lorde Mahounde hem qwelle ! 

XL of vs here be ascaped, 

And hardde we be bistadde." 2616 

" Who so wole of hem more be iaped, 

I holde him worsse than madde." 

Tho Roulande and Olyuer* 

Madeii grete woo and sorowe, 2620 

And token the corps of Sir Bryere 

And beryed it on the morowe. 

Floripe asked Roulande anoone 

" Where is my loue Sir Gye 1 " 

" Damesel " he saide "he is goon, 

And therfore woo am I." 

" Alas " she saide " than am 1 dede, 

Towe Gye my lorde is slayn, 

Shall I neuer more ete brede 

Tille that I may se him agayn." 

" Be stille " qwod Roulande " and haue no car 1 . 

We shal hym haue ful wele. 2632 

fleaf 65j 

2604 Sir Bryer ii 


At last the 
Saracens take to 

The peers retire 
inside the castle, 
taking the corpse 
of Bryer with 

2624 Floripas enquires 
after Guy, 

and on hearing 
of his capture, 
2628 begins to lament 

Roland promises 
to rescue Guy. 



[leaf 66] 

On the following 
morning Laban 
orders Sir 
Tamper to erect 
a gallows 
before the castle, 
where Floripas 
could see it. 

Guy is led 

Roland calls his 
companions to 

They rush forth. 

Tomorowe wele we fchiderward far* 

With spere and shelde of stele. 

But we bringe him to this Tour* 

Leeve me elles no more 2636 

With victorye and grete honour 1 , 

Or thay shalle abye it ful sore." 

On the morowe, whan tha daye was clere, 

Laban ordeynede Gye honged to be. 2640 

He cleped forth Sir Tampere 

And badde him do make a Galowe tre, ' 

" And set it even by-fore the tour 1 , 

That Jrilke hore may him see ; 2644 

For by lord Mahounde of honour 1 , 

This traitcwr there shalle honged be. 

Take withe the .iij. hundred knightes 

Of Ethiopia, Indens and Ascopartes, 2648 

That bene boolde and hardy to fight 

With Wifles, Fauchons, Gauylokes l and Dartes ; 

Leste fat lurdeynes come skulkynge oute, 

For ever thay haue bene shrewes. 2652 

Loke eche of hem haue such a cloute, 

That thay neuer ete moo Sewes." 

Forth thay wente with Sir Gye, 

That bounde was as a thefe faste, 2656 

Tille thay come the towr 1 ful nye ; 

Thai rered the Galowes in haste. 

Roulande perceyued here doynge 

And saide " felows, let armes 2 ! 2660 

I am ful gladde of here comynge, 

Hem shall not helpe her charmes." 

Oute thai rideh a wele gode spede, 

Thai ix towarde hem alle. 2664 

Florip with here maydyns toke gode hede, 

Biholdinge over the tour* walle. 

Thai met first with Sir Tamper 1 , 

1 JUS. Gamylokes. 2 Read: ' as armes.' 


God gife him evelle fyne ! 2668 

Such a stroke lente hym Olyuer*, Oliver cuts down 

Sir Tamper; 

He clefe him down to the skyne. 

Eouland bare the kinge of Ynde Roland kills a 

king of Indiii. 

Ther with his spere frome his stede. 2672 

.iiij. fote it passed his bak byhynde, 

His herte blode Jjer 5 didde he blede. 

He caught the stede, he was ful goode, takes ins sword 

And the swerde, }>at the kinge hadde, 2676 

And rode to Gye, there he stode, [leaf e?] 

And onbounde hym and bade him be gladde. and gives them 

to Guy, 

And girde him with tha.t goode swerde, having unbound 


And lepen vppon here stedes. 2680 

" Be thou " he saide " righte nought a-ferde, 

But helpe vs wightly at this nede." 

An hundred of hem sone thay slowe They slay many 

Saracens, and put 

Of the beste of hem alle ; 2684 the rest to 

The remencmnte a-way fast thay flowe, 

That foule motte hem byfalle ! 

Eouland and his Felowes were glad 

That Gye was safe in dede. 2688 

Thay thanked god, that thay 1 him hadde 

Gyfen thaye r such grace to spede. 

As thay wente towarde the Tour 1 , Retiring towards 

A litil bysyde the hye waye, 2692 

Thai saugh comynge with grete vigour* 

An hundred vppon a laye. 2 

Costroye ther was, the AdmyraH, they see admiral 

With vitaile grete plente, 2696 

And the stondarte of the Sowdofi EoiaL and the soudan's 

, ., . ,_-, standard-bearer 

lowarde Mauntnble riden he, escorting a 

.iiij. Chariotes I- charged with flessh and brede, 
And two other* with wyne, 2700 

Of divers colouris, yolowe, white and rede, 
And iiij Somers of spicery fyne. 

1 See the note. ' 2 MS. ' alaye.' Ste the note. 



Roland calls to 

to share the 
provisions with 

Tho saide Roulande to Olyuer* : 

"With these meyne moste we shifte, 2704 

To haue parte of here vitailes her*, 
For therof us nedith by my thrifte." 
" Howe, sires " he saide " god you see ! 
We pray youe for youre curtesye, 2708 

Parte of your Yitaile graunte me, 
For we may nother borowe ner bye." 
Tho spake Cosdroye, that Admyral, 

costroye refuses, " Ye gete none here for nogfrt. 2712 

Yf ye oght chalenge in speciaft, 
It most be dere I-boght." 
K gentil knightes" quod Olyuere, 
" He is no felowe, J>at wole haue alle." 2716 

"Go forth" quod the stondart, "thou) getist noon here, 
Thy parte shalle be fulle smalle." 
[leaf 68] "Forsoth" quod. Eoulande "and shift we wole, 

Ge;te the better, who gete maye ! 2720 

To parte with the nedy it is gode skille, 

And so shalle ye by my faye." 

He rode to the Admyral with his swerde 

And gafe him suche a cloute, 2724 

JSTo wonder thogh he were aferde, 

Both his ey^en braste oute. 

Olyuere met withe the proude stondarde, 

He smote him through the herte. 2728 

That hade he for his rewarde ; 

That wounde gaii sore smerte. 

Thai were slayn, that wolde fight 

Er durste bikure abyde. 2732 

Thai forsoke her parte anoon right, 

It lefte alle on that on side. 

Forth thai drewen )>at vitaile 

Streight in-to the Toure. 2736 

There was no mail durst hem assayle. 

For drede of here vigour 1 . 

and is slain by 

Oliver kills the 

The convoy is 
conveyed into the 



Floripe hem resceyved vrit/i honour* 

And thanked Eoulande fele sythe, 2740 Fionpas thanks 

Roland for 

That she saugfr Gye hir paramour 1 , bringing back Sir 

That wolde she him qwite and kithe. 

Thai eten and dronken and made hem gladde, 

Hem neded ther aftyr fulle sore 2744 

Of suche, as god hem sente hade, 

I-nowe for iiij moonjjes and more. 

Florip saide to Roulande than, and proposes that 

_ lie shall choose 

" Ye moste chese you a love L 474o himself a 

, . . mistress from 

Of alle my maydyns, white as swan. amongst her 

Qwod Rouland " Jjat were myscheve ; 

Oure lay wole not, fat we with, youe dele, any thV 

Tille that ye Crtstyn be made ; 2752 Christian. 

Ner of your play we wole not fele, 

For than were we cursed in dede." 

"Owe shall ye here of Laban. The soudan, on 

Whan tidyngges to him wer* comen, 2756 ** 


Tho was he a fulle sory man. 
Whan he herde, howe his vitaile were iiomefi, 
And howe his men were slayne, 

And Gye was go safe hem froo, 2760 [ieaf69] 

He defyed Mahounde and Apolyne, again defies his 

lubiter, Ascarot and Alcaron also. 

He cowmaundede a fire to be dight and threatens to 

With picche and Brymstofi to bren. 2764 the flames. 

He made a vowe with alle his myglit, 
" Thai shal be caste ther-Inne ! " 
The prestes of her* lawe ther-oii, 

Thai criden oute for drede 2768 

And saide " alas, what wole ye done ? 
The worse than moste ye spede ! " 
The Sowdon made a grete othe 

And swore by his hye trone, 2772 

That though hem were never so loth, 
1 Read ; ' leva.' 



But bishop 
Cramadas kneels 
before him and 
appeases him. 

The soudan 
makes an offering 
of 1000 besants to 
his gods. 

When Richard 
as far as 
Mantrible, he 
[leaf 70] 

found the bridge 
barred by 24 
chains, and 
standing before 

Determined not 
to leave his 

he knelt down 
and commended 
himself to God. 

4 hind appears 

Thai sholde be brente Ichon. 

Tho caine the bisshope Cramadas 

And kneled bifore the Sowdon, 2776 

And charged him by the hye name Sathanas, 

To saven his goddes ychon : 

" For if ye brenne youre goddes her 5 , 

Ye wynnyn her malison, 2780 

Than wole no man do you) cher 1 , 

In feelde, Cite, nei j in town." 

The Sowdon was astonyed fan 

And gan him sore repente 2784 

Of the foly, that he bygan, 

And els hade he be shente. 

A thousande of Besauntes he offred faym to, 

By counsail of sir Cramadas, 2788 

To please with" his goddys tho, 

For fere of harde grace. 

The Sowdone co??zmaunded euery daye 

To assaile thejtour 1 with" caste. 2792 

But thay with-in gafe not an Eye, 

For thai wroghte in wast. 

"% ~T~Owe speke we of Richarde of Normandy, 

\^ That on message was sente, 2796 

JL_ 1 Howe he spede and his nieyne. 
Whan he to Mauntrible wente, 
He founde the brigge Ichayned sore ; 
xxiiij" were ouere-drawen. 2800 

Alagolofure stode there byfore, 
That many a man hade slawene. 
Whan Richard saugh", ther was no gate, 
But by flagot the ftode, 2804 

His message wolde he not lete ; 
His hors was both" bigge and goode. 
He kneled, bisechinge god of his grace, 
To save him fro myschiefe. 2808 

A white hcnde he saugh" anoon in fat place, 


That swam over 5 the cliffe. and swims 


He blessed him in godis name 

And folowed the same wave 2812 Richard follows 

her, and, passing 

The gentil hende, J?at was so tame, over in safety, 

That on J)at othir side gan playe. 

He thanked god fele sythe, 

That him hade sente comforte. 2816 

He hied him in his message swi be, hurries on to 


To speke with" Charles his lorde. 

But I shalle you) telle of a trayto?//', 

That his name was called Genelyne, 2820 

He counseiled Charles for his honour* Memwhiie 

Genelyn, the 

To turne homewarde ageyn. traitor, had 

advised Charles 

He saide "the xij peres bene alle dede, to retire to 

And ye spende your goode in vayne, 2824 because the 12 

i t 1 e i .- i i peers were all 

And therfore dotn nowe by my rede, Blain . 

Ye shalle see hem no more certeyn." 

The kinge bileved bat he saide, The king 

believed him, and 

And homwarde gan he fare. 2828 marched home- 

r-r p i -r\ T 3 ward, lamenting 

He of his xij Dosiperes was sore dismayed, for h: 8 peers. 

His herte woxe right f ulle of car 1 . 

Evcharde of Normandy came prikande Richard overtakes 

him, and is 

And hertly to ride begane. 2832 recognised by 

Kinge Charles aspyed him comande ; 

He commaunded to abide Query man. 

" What tidings^?" quod, the kinge to Eicharde. who asks him 

about the others. 

" Howe fare my felowes alle 1 " 2836 

"My lorde" he saide "god wote, ful harde, Richard teiis the 

king, how they 

For thai be byseged with-in ston-walle, are besieged 

. . , , , x , within the castle, 

Abydynge youre helpe ana your socour', and are waiting 

As men fat haue grete nede. 2840 for his assistance ' 

For Ihesues loue, kinge of honour 5 , 

Thiderward ye you) spede ! " 

" Genelyne " qwod the kinge, Charles, vowing 

vengeance on 

" Kowe knowe I thy treson, 2844 [leaf ?ij 

I shalle the qwite, be seynte Fremouude, 




turned and 
to Agreraore. 

Richard informed 
him of the giant, 
who kept the 

and how he had 
passed the river 
by a miracle. 

He proposed a 

that 12 knights 
disguised as 
merchants, with 

their arms hidden 
under their 

should pay the 

and the bridge 
being let down, 

should blow a 


as a signal for the 

others to 


They start and 
arrive at 

"VVhan this viage is don." 
The kinge turned him ageyn, 

And alle his Ooste him witH, 2848 

Towarde Mountrible certeyne. 
And 1 graunte him gree and grith ! 
Richarde him tolde of that place, 

Howe stronge it was I-holde 2852 

With a geaunte foule of face, 
The brigge hath chayned many folde ; 
The Eiver was both depe and brode, : 
Ther myght no man over-ryde. 2856 

" The last tyme that I over-rode, 
By myracle I passed J>at tide. 
Therfore sir, I shal you) telle, 

Howe ye mote governe you) here. 2860 

In yonde wode ye moste dwelle 
Priuely in this maner*, 
And xij of vs shalle vs araye 

In gyse of stronge marchauntes, 2864 

And fille oure somers withe fog and haye, 
To passe the brigge. Currauntes. 
We shalle be armed vnder the cote 
With goode swerdes wele I-gyrde, 2868 

We moste paye tribute, wele I wote, 
And elles over we may not sterte. 
But whan the chaynes be lete down 
Ouer ther for to passe, 2872 

Than wole I, ]>at ye come on, 
In haste to that same place. 
Whan I see tyme for to come, 

Than shalle I my home bio we. 28 7G 

Loke, ye be redy alle and some, 
For that shall ye welle knowe." 
Forth thay wente in J>at araye 

To Mountrible, that Cite. 2880 

1 Read: 'God.' 


Alagolof ur ) to hem gan seye, Aiagoiafre asks 

whither they are 

" Felawes, wheder wole ye ? going. 

Richarde spake to the geaunte 

And saide " towarde the Sowdon, 2884 Richard says, 

thsy arc ni6r - 

With dyufelrs chaffer* as trewe marchaunte, chants on their 

way to the 

We purpose for to goon, Soudan, 

To shewen him of pellur* and Gryse, 1 

Orfrays of Perse Imperyalle, 2888 [leaf 723 
We wole the yefe tribute of assaye and the y are 

willing to pay the 

To passe by lycence in especyaH." to11 - 

" Licence gete ye noon of me, 2 Aiagoiafre 

refuses to let 

I am charged that noone shall passe, 2892 them pass, 

For x lurdeyns of Fraunce were her* : and teiisthei 

about the 10 

God yefe hem evell grace ! knights, 

Thay passed this way to Egramour' ; who had passed 

there and done sc 

Thay haue done the Sowdon grete tene, 2896 much mischief 

to the Soudan ; 

lhay have wonne his toure and his tresour, 

And yet holde thai it, I wene. 

Wherf or*, f elawes, I arest you) alle, therefore he will 

arrest them all. 

Tille I knowe, what )>at ye bene." 2900 

Sire Focarde brayde oute his swerde with-alle, sir Focard draw* 

his sword and 

Wei sore he gan to tene 
And saide " fye on the Sarasyne ! 
For alle thy grete harde hede 2904 

Shaltow never drinke water ner wyne, 
By god ! thou shalte be dede." 

He smote at him with egre chere smites at him. 

But he gafe thereof right nought. 2908 

" Alas " qwod Richard " thou combrest vs her*, 
By god, that me der* hath boghte." 
The cheynes yet wer* alle faste, 

The geaunte wexe nere wode, 2912 

Eichard blewe his home in haste, Richard blows 

That was both shrille and goode. 

Kinge Charles hied him anoofi andcharies 

1 Read : ' gray.' 2 See the note. advances. 

G 2 


Alagolafre fights 
them with a 
great oak club. 

Richard seizes a 
bar of brass 
and knocks him 

[leaf 73] 

4 men get hold of 

and throw him 
into the river. 

They loosened 
the chains ; 

but, the Saracens 
assembling on 
the wails of the 
city, many 
Christians were 

Alagolafre's wife, 
Barrock the 
giantess, comes 
on with her 
scythe and mows 
down all whom 
she meets. 

Charles dashes 
cut her brains, 

Towarde the brigge so longe ; 2916 

The Geaunte faught with hem alone, 
He was so harde and stronge. 
With a Clog 1 of an Oke he faught, 
That was wele bound with stele. 2920 

He slough al Jmt ever* he Taught, 
So stronge was his dinte to dele. 
Kichard raught him with a barr 1 of bras, 
That he caught at the gate. 2924 

He brake his legges, he cryed " alas " 
And felle alle chefr-mate. 
Loude than gan he to yelle ; 

Thay herde him yelle through fat Cite, 2928 

Like the grete develle of helle, 
And saide " Mahounde, nowe helpe me ! " 
iiij men him caught ther 5 , 

So hevy he was and longe, 2932 

And cast him ouer in-to the river 1 . 
Chese he, whither 1 he wolde swymme or gong 1 ! 
Anoon thay brast the Chaynes alle, 
That ouer the brigge were I-drawe. 2936 

The Saresyns ronnen to the walle, 
Many Cristen men were ther* I-slawe. 
Than came forth Dam barrok 1 , the bolde, 
With a sithe large and kene, 2940 

And mewe a-down as jnkke as shepe in folde, 
That came byforne hir by-dene. 
This Barrok 1 was a geaunesse, 

And wife she was to Astragote, 2944 

She did the Cristen grete distresse, 
She felled downe alle J>at she smote. 
There durst no man hire sithe abyde, 
She grenned like a develle of helle. 2948 

Kinge Charles with a quarel fat tide 
Smote hir, that she lowde gan yelle, 
1 . ? whether..' 


Euer 1 the founte through-oute the brayil; 
That cursede fende fille down dede. 
Many a man hade she there slayn, 
Might she never aftyr etc more brede ! 
Charles entred in the firste warde 
With xv knightis and no moo ; 
Of hym his oste toke no garde, 
He wende his oste hade entred also. 
The Sarysyns ronne to the gate, 
And shet it wonder faste. 
Charles men come to late ; 
Tho was Charles sore agaste. 
Betwene two wardes he was shit, 
Defende he him if he can ! 
The Sarysyns with him thay mette, 
Grete parel was he in than. 
Tho Genelyne saie, the kinge was inne 
And the yates faste I-stoke, 
Ther myght no man to him wynne, 
So was he faste with-inne I-loke, 
To his frendes he gan speke 
And saide " the kinge is dede, 
And alle xij peres eke. 
On peyne " said he " to lese myn hede, 
Let vs hye to Fraunce warde ! 
For I wele be crownede kinge, 
I shalle you) alle wele rewarde, 
For I wole spare for no thinge." 
Anoon thay assented to Genelyne, 
Thay saugh, ther was no better rede. 
The Frenssh men drewe hem al ayene, 
Thay wende the kinge hade bene dedde. 
Tho Ferumbras with his meyne than 
Came for to seke the kinge, 
And saugh hem turne Query man ; 
1 Head 'over.' 


and with 15 
knights enters the 
2956 outer gate of the 



thinking his 
army would 
follow him. 

But the gate was 
instantly closed 
upon him, and his 
men came too 

Charles was in 
great danger ; 

but Genelyn, 
seeing him shut 

2968 in, 

2973 [leaf 74] 

exclaimed that 
the king 
and the 12 peers 
were dead, and 
proposed to 

2976 as he wished to 
be king himself. 



They are going to 

but Ferumbraa 


calls him a 

rallies the 

and with his axe 
bursts open the 

He chased the 
Saracens and 
rescued the king. 

Mantrible is 

[leaf 75] 

with all its 
engines and 

Richard found 
2 children of 7 
months old and 

Him thought, it was a wondir thing 1 . 
" Where is the kinge 1 " quod. Ferumbras. 
Qwod Genelyne " with-in the walle, 2988 

Shaltowe neuer 1 more seen his face ! " 
" God gyf the an yvel falls ! 
Turns agayne, thou) traytoure ! 

And helpe to reskowe thy lorde. 2992 

And ye, sires, alle for your 1 honour* ! " 
Thay turned agayne with that worde. 
Ferumbras with axe in honde, 

Myghtyly brake up the gate, 2996 

Ther myght laste him noon yron bonde, 
He hade ner'-honde I-come to late. 
The kinge hadde fought so longe witfr-ynne, 
That onnethe myght he no more. 3000 

Many ther were abouten him, 
His men were wounded ful sore. 
Ferumbras came with gode spede, 
He made the Sarasyns to fle. 3004 

He reskowed the kinge at his nede, 
XL Sarasyns sone killed he. 
Thai ronnen a-weye by every side, 
Thai durste nowher' rowte. 3008 

In shorte tyme was failed her pride, 
Thay caught many a sore cloute. 
That Cite was wonne that same daye, 
And every tour 1 ther-ynne 3012 

Of Mountreble, jjat was so gaye, 
For alle her 1 soubtile gynne, 
Fulle of tresour* and richesse, 

Of Siluer and goolde and perr*, 3016 

And clothes of goolde, wroght of Saresynes, 
Of riche aray and roialte. 
Eicharde, Duke of Normandy, 

Founde ij Children of .vij. monies oolde, 1 3020 

1 See the note. 


xiiij fote longe wer 1 thay, 
Thay wer* Barrakes somies so boolde ; 
Bygote thay wer> of Astragot. 
Grete joye the kinge of hem hade. 
Hethen thay wer* both, wele I wote, 
Therfore hem to be cristenede he bade. 
He called J>at one of hem Eoulande, 
And that other he cleped Olyuer* : 
" For thai shalle be myghty men of honde," 
To kepeii hem, he was fulle chere. 
Thay myght not leve, her Dam was dede ; 
Thai coude not kepe hem forth. 
Thai wolde ney)?er ete butter nere brede, 
NQI no men 1 was to hem worthe. 
Her 5 Dawmes mylke they lakked ther 1 , 
Thay deyden for defaute of here dam. 
Kinge Charles made hevy chei j , 
And a sory man was than. 
The kinge lete ordeyne anoon, 
The Cite to be gouerned? 
Of the worthyest of hem ychon, 
That weren of wen? best lerned*. 
Duke Bicharde of Normandy, 
He was made chief gouernour* ; 
And ij C with him in hys company 
To kepe the brigge and tour*. 
Forth he rode to laban than, 
With his Ooste and Sir 1 Ferumbras. 
A spye to the Sowdon fast ran 
And tolde him al that cas, 
How Charles was come with his ost, 
And Mountrible hade he wonne, 
" Alagolofur slayfi is for alle his bost, 
This game was evel begon." 
Whane laban herde of his comynge, 
1 Read: 'mete.' 




4 feet high. 

They were sons 
of Barrock, 
begotten by 

Charles caused 


to be baptized, 

and called the 

one Roland and 

the other Oliver. 

But they soon 

for want of their 
mother's milk. 


The king 
appoints Richard 
3044 governor of the 

and hurries on to 
Agremore with 
3048 his army and 

with Ferumtras. 




[leaf 76] 

Laban, being told 
by a spy that his 
city was taken 
and the bridge- 
ward killed, 

swears to avenge 

He calls a council) 
and charges his 
barons to take 
Charles alive that 
he might flay 


Floripas first 
recognises the 
banner of France 

and tells the 

Him thought his herte gan breke. 3056 

"Shalle I never be withoute inoornynge, 

Tille I of him be wreke." 

He cowmaunded to blowe his Claryons 

To assemble alle his Ooste. 3060 

His counsaile to him he lete calle 

And tolde, how kinge Charles was in J>at coost, 

Hadde wonne Mountrible and slayn his men 

"And dishiryth to disheryte me, 3064 

And proudely manessith me to fleen, 

Or drive me oute of this contre. 

Me mervaylythe moch of his pride. 

By Mahounde, moost of myght ! 3068 

Ye and my sone withe him doth ride, 

To the develle I hem bedight. 

But I be veDget of hem both 

And honge hem on a tree, 3072 

To myghty Mahounde I make myne othe, 

Shalle I never Joyf ulle be. 

Therfore I charge you) in alle wyse 

That thay be taken or slayn. 3076 

Thane shalle I pywne heme at my gyse 

And don hem alle qwike be flayn. " 

On the morowe, whan it was day, 

Kinge Charles was in the felde, 3080 

Byfore Agremour 5 in riche aray 

On stede with sper 1 and sheelde. 

Floripe lay on the tour* on hye 

And knewe the baner 5 of Fraunce. 3084 

To Roulande she gan faste crye 

Tidynges of goode chaunce : 

" Kinge Charles is comen and Ferumbras, 

Here baners both I do see, 3088 

"With alle her oste yonder* in J>at place ; 

Welcome to vs thay alle be." 

Roulande and Olyuere 


Arayed hem for to ride ; 3092 Roland and aii 

' . his companions 

And here ielawes alle in ier, saiiy forth to 

meet Chnrle- 

lo Charles thay goii that tyde. magne. 

Laban come forth with bis mayne, Laban draws up 

all his people 

Saresyns, that were ful felle, 3096 

Turkes, Indens, and Arabye 

Ye and of the Ethiopes like the develes of helle. 

There were stronge wardes sctte [leaf 77] 

By ordynaimce of dyuers batayle. 3100 in battle-order. 

Whan thay to geder were met, 

Eythir othir sore gan assayle. 

Ther were Saresyns al to-he\ve ; The French make 

a great slaughter 

Koulande sloughe many one. 6104: of the Saracens. 

Thay lay so thikke dede on rewe, 

That onnej>e myghte men ride or goon. 

Kinge Charles met with Laban Charles 

And bare him down of his stede, 3108 soudan, 

-FT t- i , i i , -i i ji unhorses him, 

He lighted down and ceased him than, 

He thought to qwite him his mede. 

He brayde oute Mownjoye wyth gode wille 

And wolde have smeten of his hede, 3112 and would have 

cut off his head, 

Ferumbras prayde him to abyde stille, butforFerumbras, 

. . , who requested 

lo crysten him, er he wer dede. that ins father 

The Saresyns saughe Laban take, baptized. 

Thay fiedden away fulle faste. 3116 seeing^S' 

Lenger durste thay no maistryes make, J^ 8 

Thai were so sore agaste. 

The Cristen hem chased to and fro, but the Christians 

As a grehounde doth the hare. 3120 

.iii. c. ascaped with moche woo, soo escaped to 

J Belmarine. 

To Belmore gan thay far*. 

Kinge Charles ladde Laban Charles leads 

In-to Agremour* Cite. 3124 Agremore. 

And whan ]>at he ther 1 came 

A ful sory man was he. 

Floripas wel- 
His do^llter Welcomed hill! comes her father, 



but he is enraged 
at seeing her. 

She then bids 

and presents the 
holy relics to 

Deaf 78] 

Charles kisses 
and says a 
prayer ; 

he then thanks 
Floripas for her 
assistance to his 

and for having 
preserved the 
precious relics. 

He orders Turpin 
to prepare a 

wherein to bap- 
tize the Soudan 

nnd to wash off 
liis sin in the 

With right gode cher*. 1 3128 

He loked on hir al grymme, 

As he wode wroth wer 5 , 

And saide " fye on the, stronge hore, 

Mahounde confounde the ! " 3132 

Charles saide " here-of no more, 

But let us nowe mery be ! " 

" Sir " she saide thanne, 

" Welcome ye be into this tour 1 ! 3136 

Here I presente to you, as I can, 

Relikes of grete honour 1 , 

That were at Rome I-wonnen 

And broght into this halle. 3140 

That game was evel bygo?znen, 

It si then rewed us alle." 

Kinge Charles kneled adown 

To Idsse the Relikes so goode, 3144 

And badde thei j an oryson 

To that lorde, J?at deyde on rode. 

And Ranked Floripe with al his herte, 

That she hade saued his meyne ! 3148 

And holpe hem oute of peynes smerte 

And kepte the Relekes so fre. 

Kinge Charles did calle bisshope Turpyfi 

And bade him ordeyne a grete fat, 3152 

To baptyse the Sowdon yne ; 

" And loke what he shalle hat. 

Unarme him faste and bringe him ner 1 , 

I shal his godfader be. 3156 

Fille it fulle of water 1 cler*, 

For Baptysed shalle he be. 

Make him naked as a Childe, 

He moste plunge ther-inne. 3160 

For now most he be meke and mylde, 

And I-wassh awaye his synne." 

1 These two lines are written as one in the MS. 


Turpyn toke him by the honde Turpin leads 


Angl.ladde him to the fonte. 3164 font, 

He smote the bisshope with a bronde buttheSoudan 

strikes at him, 

And gaf him an evel bronte. 

He spitted in the water cler 1 8 P its the 


And cryed oute on hem alle, 3168 utters invectives 

against all 

And defied alle J?at cristen wer*. Christians, 

That foule mote him by-falle 1. 

" Ye and thou), hore serpentyne, 

And that fals cursed Ferumbras, 3172 and curses 


Mahounde gyfe hem both evel endyng 1 , 

And almyghty Sathanas ! 

By you came all my sorowe, 

And al my tresure for-lorne. 3176 

Honged be ye both er tomorowe ! 

In cursed tyme were ye born." 

Ferumbras saide to the kinge, 

" Sir, ye see, it wole not be, " 3180 

Lete him take his endynge, 

For he loueth not Cristyante." 

"Duke Neymes" qwod Charles tho, Charles com- 

. _ o -i o j mauds Nayraes 

" Loke Jjat execucion be don, olo4r to cut off his 
Smyte of his hedde ! god gyfe him woo ! Ja '[i ea f 79] 

And goo we to mete anoone." 
It was done as the kinge co?wmaunde, He is executed ; 

his soul goes to 

His soule was fet to helle, 3188 hen, 

, , there to dance 

To daunse in pat sory lande with devils. 

With develes, pat wer* ful felle. 

Dame Florip was Baptysed than rioripas was 

baptized with all 

And here maydyns alle, 3192 her maidens, 

i j /^ -r and wedded to 

And to Sir Gye I-maryed. Guy. 

The Barons honoured hir alle. 

Alle the londe of Spayne Charles divided 

Spain between 

3uige Charles gyfe hem two, 3196 Guy and 

vn i i -i i i Ferumbras, 

lo departe bitwyxt hem twayne, 
Ferumbras and Gy also. 



and charges Sir 
Bryer of 
Bretayne to take 
care of the relics, 

and to bring all 
his treasure to 

After taking 
leave of Guy and 

he sails to Moan- 

[leaf 80] 

where he thanks 
God for the 

And so thay livede in ioye and game, 
And brethern both thay wei j , 3200 

In pees and weri j both I-sarne, 
Ther 1 durste no man hem der 1 . 
Kinge Charles turned home agayn 
Towarde his contre, 3204 

He charged Sir Bryei of Bretayne 
His tresourer 1 for to be : 
To kepe the Eelikes of grete pris 
And his other tresour 1 , 3208 

And bringe hem safe to Parys, 
There to a-bide in store. 
He saide " farewell, Sir Ferumbras, 
Ye and Gye, my dere frende ! 3212 

And thy wyf Dame Floripas ! 
For to Fraunce nowe wole I wende. 
Be ye togeder as breth[e]rn both ! 
No man ye neditn" to drede, 32 16 

Be ye nevere to-gedere wroth, 
But eyther helpe othir at his nede. 
Yysityth me, whan ye haue space ; 
In-to Fraunce makith" your disporte, 3220 

God wole you sende the better grace, 
In age to do me comforte." 
Thai toke leve of the kinge, 

With ful hevy cher 1 , 3224 

And turned agayn both" mornynge, 
With wepynge water cler>. 
Kinge Charles with the victory 

Sailed to Mourcpeleres, 3228 

And thanked almyghty god in glorye, 
That he hade saued his Dosiperes, 
And fende him of the Saresynes 

The hyer honde to have, 3232 

For alle here strenghe l and her* Engynes 
' Head : ' streng^he ' 


The Eelikes of Rome to saue. and for the relics. 

At OUie lady Of Parys He presents the 

cross to Piiris 

He offred the Crosse so fre ; 3236 

The Crown he offred at seynte Denyse, the crown to -st. 

At Boloyne the nayles thre. the three nails to 

Alle his Barons of him wer 5 gladd, 

Thai gafe him grete presente. 3240 

For he so wele hade I-spedde, 

Thay did him grete reuerence. 

The kinge hade wel in mynde Charles wen 

mi /> si -i ft n. A i remembered 

Ihe tresone of Genelyne, 3244 the treachery of 

Anooii for him he dide sende 

To yefe him an evel fyne : 

" Thou traitour unkynde " quod the kynge, 

" Remembrist thou) not how ofte 3248 

Thou hast me betrayed, J>ou fals Genelyne 1 

Therfore thoue shalt be honged on lofte ! 

Loke that the execucion be don, 

That throgh Parys he be drawe. 3252 and ordered him 

to be drawn and 

And honged on hye on mouwt Fawcon, hanged at 


As longeth to traytoures by lawe ; Paris. 

That alle men shall take hede, 

What deth traytowrys shall fele, 3256 

That assente to such falshede, 

Howe the wynde here bodyes shal kele." 

Thus Charles conquered Labafi, Tims Charles 

The Sowdon of Babyloyne, 3260 3a n r of "* 

That riche Rome stroyed and wan 

And alle the brode londe.of Spayn. 

1 [an]d of his Barons 

[hi]s pride 3264 


pat tyde 

on Charles soule 

. . . , . . .s also 3268 

1 A corner of tlie leaf torn off. 


Peter and Poule 

[leaf si] God lete hem never wete of woo ! 

But "brynge here soules to goode reste ! 
That were so worthy in dede. 3272 

God give joy to And gyf vs ioye of the beste, 

all who read this 

romance. That of here gestes rede ! 

Here endithe the Romaunce of the Sowdon 
of Babyloyne and of Ferumbras his sone 
who conquerede Rome, And Kynge Charles 
off Fraunce withe xij. Dosyperes toke the 
Sowdon in the feelde And smote of his 


Page 1, line 1. myghteste, evidently an error of the scribe for myghtes, 
cf. 11. 1635, 1312, 3068, 2546, 1200, 2059 ; and Syr Ferumbras, 1. 
2719. "Nov help hem \>e he} kyng of hevene, 

pat art of mi^tes most." 

God in glorie occurs again in 1. 3229 } cf. the French expression 
Damedeu de glore; Fierabras 2332. 

p. 1, 1. 2. made and wroght in 1. 5 are the 2nd person sing, preterite, 
which in all other instances in this poem ends in -est. But perhaps 
we might suppose a change of person here, and regard made and 
wroght as the third person. For examples of the change of person 
see Syr Ferumbras, 11. 2719, 4393, and Guy of Warwick, ed. Zupitza, 
1. 2324. 

p. 1, 1. 7. shulde to love ; to before an infinitive, governed by an 
auxiliary verb, is pretty common in Middle English works. See 
Zupitza's note to Guy, 1925. 

p. 1, 1. 9. $yfe. This is the only instance of 3 being written in the present 
poem at the beginning of a word, ^ife is written if in all other 
passages of the poem, cf. 11. 550, 651, 763, and 1061, etc. As to the 
pronunciation of 3 in the middle of a word, it is doubtful, whether it 
had still preserved its ancient guttural sound, or not, as the same 
words are written sometimes with it and sometimes without it, and 
are often made to rhyme with words in which 3 or gh would be 
etymologically incorrect ; e. g. nye, which is spelt ny$e in 1. 2284, 
rhymes with Gye, in 1. 2657. We even find whtye, in 1. 2289, instead 
of white (1. 2008 : smyte). At the end of a word 3 has the sound of s. 

p. 1,1. 13. idoone. The prefix i-, O.E. ge-, sometimes occurs in this poern, 
but more frequently it is not written ; see Introduction, p. xxxviii. 

p. 1,1. 14. cf. 1. 2516. 11. 1 14 may be said to contain the moral of 
the whole poem, which we know the romance writers to be very fond 
of placing at the beginning of their works. " La moralite de tout un 
poeme," says Leon Gautier, in his Epopees Franqaises, I. 233, " est 
quelquefois exprimee dans ses premiers vers." 

96 NOTES TO pp. 1, 2, 11. 16 29. 

p. 1, 1. 16. mocTi = much (as in 1. 754) is the usual spelling in this 

poem. We likewise find meche, 1. 179, and mikille, 1. 1016. 
p. 1, 1. 19. his refers to Rome. 

p. 1, 1. 22. Laban, the father of Ferumbras, is styled sowdan only in 
this poem, and once in the Destruction de Rome, 1. 1436 : 

" Les noveles en vindrent al soldan diffaie*." 

The French, the Provengal and the English version of Sir Ferumbras 
all agree to call him amyral or amirans. 

p. 1, 1. 24. The mention of King Louis and of the abbey of St. Denis 
(1. 27) seerns to be an imitation of the Destruction, 1. 7 et seq. : 
" Le chanchon est perdue et le rime fausee, 
Mais . . li rois Louis, dont 1'alme est trespassed 
Ke li fache pardon la verge honoree 
Par lui et par Gautier est 1'estoire aunee 
Et le chanchon drescie, esprise et alumee 
A saint Dynis de France premiereraent trovee." 
St. Denis also occurs in the beginning of the French Fierabras, 1. 4 : 

" A Saint Denis en France fu li raules trouveV 

Cf. besides note to 1. 26. witnessith = attests, testifies ; cf. Stratmann, 
p. 645. It occurs again in 1. 1489. 

p. 2, 1. 25. Romaunce, the French or Romance language. We often 
find the authors of romances, both of translations and of imitations 
from the French, referring to the original ; cf. Syr Eglamour ofArtoys, 
sign. E i : His own mother there he wedde, 

In Komaunce as we rede." 
Again, fol. ult. : " In Romaunce this cronycle is." 

[Quoted by Warton. History of English Poetry, II. 146, footnote.] 
p. 2, 1. 26. boJces of antiquyte. This is to be regarded as one of those 
frequent assertions of the authors of these poems, who in order to 
give more credit to their tales, thought it necessary to affirm their 
antiquity and celebrity in old times. Cf. Gautier, Epop. .FV.,11. 87 : 
" II fut de bon ton d'annoncer, au commencement de chaque poeme, 
qu'on avail trouve la matiere de ce poeme dans quelque vieux 
manuscrit latin, dans quelque vieille chronique d'abbaye, surtout 
dans les manuscrits et dans les chroniques de Saint-Denis. On se 
donnait par la un beau vernis de veracite historique. Plus les 
trouverent ajoutaient aux chansons primitives d'affab illations ridicules, 
plus ils s'ecriaient : ' Nous avons trouve tout cela dans un vieux 
livre.' " 

p. 2, 1. 27. Seinte Denyse is the genitive depending on abbey. 
p. 2, 1. 28. there as = where, or where that. See Koch, Englische 

Grammatik, II. 511. 

p. 2, 1. 29. Laban. So the father of Ferumbras is called in the 
Destruction de Rome, where only in six passages (11. 891, 899, 1116, 
1194, 1174, 981) we find the form Balan, which is the only one used 
in the French Fierabras, in the Proven9al version, and in the English 

NOTES TO p. 2, 11. 31 49. 97 

Syr Ferumbras. of hie degre ; this kind of expletive occurs again 
in 1. 100 : clerk of hie degre ; cf. also 1. 168 : king of hie honour. 
p. 2, 1. 31. Crlstiante = the company of Christians, the countries 
inhabited by Christians, cf. 11. 235, 374. It signifies " the religion 
taught by Christ "in 1.3182. Cristiante and Christendom are used 
promiscuously in Middle English writers. 

p. 2, 1. 33. Agremare : there. The rhyme becomes perfect by reading 
Agremore : thore, which we find in 1. 1805 ; cf. also 1. 1003 Agremore : 
more (i. e. negro), and 11. 672, 775, 2140, 2895. 
p. 2, 1. 34. Flagot. See Index of Names, s. v. Flagot, and cf. note to 

I. 1723. 

p. 2, 1. 37. This line is too long, nevertheless it seems to be correct as 
it stands, clearly imitated from several passages of the Destruction de 

1. 420. " Ensamble ou li issirent xv roi corone. Et xiiii amaceours . ." 
1. 1155. "Bien i ad xxx rois et xiiii amaceours." 
1. 689. "xxx roi sont ou li et xiiii" 
' 1.163. " Et xiiii amaceours." 
p. 2, 1. 41. hit instead of it is found again in 1. 2309 ; in a^ll the other 

instances it is spelt as in modern English. 

p. 2, 1. 42. pryke, to spur a horse, to excite, to spur or to stimulate. 
It is O.E. prician, which occurs in uElfric's Grammar, ed. Zupit/n, 
p. 174 (pungo '= ic pricige). This and the following line are imitated 
from Chaucer ; cf. C. T. Prologue, 11. 10, 11, and see Introduction, p. xlvi. 
Kynde = naturalis, ingenuus ; Tcynde wit == common sense. Kynde 
is O.E. cynde (Modern English kind). 

p. 2, 1. 73. frith means "forest," or more correctly "enclosed wood.'' 
The original sense of forest is " unenclosed wood " (see Diez, Etymol. 
Worterbuch, I. 185). Stratmann, Diet. p. 228, s. v. fri$, seems to 
be right in connecting frith with O.E. fri$, freoZo = pax, tutela, 
saeptum. Morris, Allit. Poems, Glossary, derives it from the Gaelic 
frith, "frith is still used in Provincial English, meaning unused 
pasture-land, brushwood " (Halliwell). 

p. 2, 1. 45. yy (O.E. eagum) : flye (O.E. fleogan). With regard to 
the power of 3, see the note to 1. 9, and cf. the spelling eyen in 11. 826, 
1302, 2012. 
p. 2, 1. 46. ire may be singular (O.E. treowe) as well as plural (O.E. * 


p. 2, 1. 49. The following lines (4953) correspond with 11. 94100 
of the Destruction, which run as follows : 

" Li admirals d'Espaigne s'est ales desporter 
As puis sur Aigremore, avec li. M. Escler ; 
La fist ses ours salvages a ses hommes berser. 
La veissies meint viautre, maint brachet descoupler, 
Pay ens et Ascopars as espees jouer, 
Coure par le marine et chacier maint sengler, 
Maint ostour veisies et maint falcon voler." 

98 NOTES TO pp. 2, 3, 11. 50 68. 

p. 2, 1. 50. shape, literally " shaped : " he shape him, " he got himself 
ready, he planned, devised, intended." The phrase is of frequent 
occurrence in Chaucer. 

p. 2, 1. 52. bawson, badger. For the use of badgers, see Skeat's note 
to Specimens of English Literature, p. 383. 

p. 2, 1. 56. Alaunts, a kind of large dogs of great strength and 
courage, used for hunting the wolf, the bear, the boar, &c. Cf. 
" Aboute his chare wente white alauntz 
Twenty and mo, as grete as any stere, 
To huute at the lyoun or at the bere." 

Chaucer, ed. Morris, II. 66/1290. 

According to Diez (Etymol. Worterb., I. 12, s. v. u alano ") alaunts 
means "Albanian dogs." Lymmeris, "blood-hounds." Halliwell 
quotes the following passage : " A dogge engendred betwene an 
hounde and a mastyve, called a lymrner or a mongrell." Lymmer is 
the French limier, O.Fr. liemier, which etymologically means a dog 
that a courser leads by a lime, i. e. a thong or leash. Lime is the 
same word as French lien, a leash ; Latin ligamen. Lymmer is 
preserved in Modern English limer, a u lime-hound." 

p. 2, 1. 56. Rache and brache are both retained in the modern speech ; 
rache seems to be particularly used in Scotland. " Brache is said to 
signify originally a bitch hound the feminine of rache, a foot- 
scenting dog" (Morris, Gawayne, Gloss, p. 89). Rache is, according 
to Stratmann, O.Icel. rakki ; brache is O.Fr. braque, M.H.Ger. 
braccho. Cf. also Halli well's Diet. s. v. " brach." The French racaille 
is etymologically connected with rache ; see Diez, Etym. Worterb. , 
II. 407. 

p. 2, 1. 57. commaunde for commaunded (1. 228), formed on the same 
analogy as comforte (1. 2242) for comforted (11. 312, 2117), alty for 
alighted gerde for girded ; graunte (1. 607) for graunted, etc. 

p. 2, 1. 59. fere, O.E. fceran (Mod. En g. /ear), is an active verb, mean- 
ing " to frighten, to terrify." It is still found in this sense in 
Shakespeare. launde : commaunde. The very same rhyme occurs 
again in 1. 3189, where launde is spelt lande. The rhyme need riot 
cause any difficulty, cf. Guy, p. xi. K. Or must launde be taken here 
for lande = saltus? Cf. Morris, Gloss, to Allit. Poems, s.v. launde. 

p. 3, 1. 62. set, means "seat, sedes" ; O.Icel. set, O.H.G. sez, M.H.G. 
sitz. This stanza as it stands seems to be incorrect, there being no 
rhyme to sete ; possibly a line has been lost after 1. 63. 

p. 3, 1. 67. The subject of the sentence is wanting. For more 
instances see Zupitza's note to Guy, 1. 10. It is to be observed that 
for the most part the subject wanting is of the same person as the 
object of the preceding sentence. he was god and trew of divers 
langages = " he well knew, Understood them perfectly." 

p. 3, 1. 68. dromonde : poundis. Read dromounde (which occurs 1. 
125) : pounde (see 1. 2336). 

NOTES TO p. 3, 11. 69 93. 99 

p. 3, 1. 69. We find fro and from in this poem. Both belong to the 
Midland dialect. Fro is confirmed by the rhyme fro : so (1. 2760). 
It is derived from the Scandinavian /ra; Mod. Eng. has retained it 
in " fro ward," and in the phrase u to and fro." The same word 
enters as a prefix into composition in O.E. compounds, as fr-ettan, 
etc. Babyloyne, the author pronounced Babyloyne as well as 
Babylone (either rhyming, cf. 11. 30, 3260). 

p. 3, 1. 74. qweynte, " famous, excellent," cf. Skeat, Etymol. Diet. p. 
482. s. v. quaint, for the nones, " for the nonce, for the occasion." 
Cf. Zupitza's note to Guy, 612 ; it is often used as a kind of 

p. 3, 1. 75. to presente you. The Destruction de Rome has : " vous qui- 
dai presenter." 

p. 3, 1. 76. French : " Uns vens nous fist a Rome parmi le far sigler." 
DestrA. 120. 

p. 3, 1. 77. Cf. Destr. 11. 115-16. See Introduction, p. xxiii. 

p. 3, 1. 78. About the rhyme Rome: one, see Introduction, p. xliii. 

p. 3, 1. 79. bygone, " afflicted, pressed hard ; " literally it means, 
"overrun, covered." Cf. Shakespeare, Julius Caesar* 

" Even such a one, 
So pale, so spiritless, and woe-begone." 

p. 3, 1. 82. vilane : remedye. Read vilanye, as in 1. 2577, where it rhymes 
with Gye, see Introduction, p. xliv, and Ellis, Pronunciation, I. 271. 

p. 3, 1. 83. colde, used here and in 1. 91 in nearly the same sense as 
in the expressions collected by Zupitza, in his note to Guy, 1149. 

p. 8, 1. 84. tithynge. So with th in 11. 1787, 714, 783; in 11. 65, 91, 
149, 324, etc., we read tidinge. There are several instances where d 
and th in the middle of a word seem to be promiscuously used in this 
poem ; as hithire 1. 1265, hider 1869 (cf. also dogdir 2580, and doghter 
96, 124, etc.). 

p. 3, 1. 86. Mahounde, Appolyn and Termagant are the principal 
deities (cf. 11. 2105, 2177, 2761) of the Mahometans, who were 
considered as pagans = pay ens (11. 535, 1040) or paynym (11. 539, 866, 
etc.). Other idols of the Saracens are mentioned in 11. 2761-2 of the 
Sowdone. Compare also Gautier's note to 1. 8, of his Edition critique 
de la Chanson de Roland, and Skeat, Prioress's Tale (Clarendon P.S.), 

p. 3, 1. 88. theyme instead of hem occurs only three times in the poem 
(11. 88, 1237, 2787). There must be some corruption here, as there is 
no rhyme to theym. The last stanza ends at 1. 87, and the next one 
begins at 1. 89. As far as the sense is concerned we could easily do 
without this line ; it ought perhaps to be regarded as spurious. 

p. 3, 1. 93. Ferumbras is spelt differently in the different versions of the 
romance. In the Sowdan we always find Ferumbras, in the Ashmole 
MS. Ferumbras arid Fyrumbras. He is called Fierabras in the French 

H 2 

100 NOTES TO p. 4, 11. 09124. 

Ferabras in the Provenfal version ; the Destruction has Fierabras, 
but more frequently Fierenbras. In Caxton's Life of Charles the 
Great his name is Fyerabras, Skelton has Pherumbras, Lyndsay 
Pharambras, and in Barbour's Bruce we read Feram brace ; see 
Introduction, pp. xxv and xxxii. 

p. 4, 1. 99. Oliborn. This name does not occur in any other version 
of this poern. The same is the case with regard to Espiard, 1. 103. 
None of the French versions gives any name to the Soudan's 
messenger. In the Ashmole MS. 1. 3823, the messenger is called 

p. 4, 1. 102. Assye = Asia. This name does not occur in the other 
versions of the poem ; cf. note to 1. 1000. 

p. 4, 1. 103. Cf. the Destruction, 1. 202 : 

" Par tote la terre sont li baron niande " 
ferre and nere, cf. 11. 117,996, and the note to 1. 528 of Syr Ferumbras. 

p. 4, 1. 104. frike, " quick, bold," O.K. free. See Stratmann, Dictionary, 
p. 225. 

p. 4, 1. 108. \)on. Compare Introduction, p. xxxvii. 

p. 4, 1. 109. The passage is not clear. Perhaps there is some corrup- 
tion here and we ought to read : anon rowte, " assembled quickly, 
immediately " ; rowte would then be the preterite formed on the 
analogy of lighte, graunte, commaunde, etc. See Introduction, p. xxxviii. 

p. 4, 1. 110. Destruction, 1. 217 : 

" Par G fois M payen." 

p. 4, 1. 112. donate : route. See Introduction, p. xliv, and note to 1. 9. 

p. 4, 1. 113. Lucafer is the name of the Saracen King in all the 
versions of this romance but in the French one, where with the 
single exception of one passage (1. 2242 Lucafer), he is always called 
Lucifer, cf. Introd. p. xx. 

p. 4, 1. 114. lorde and governoure. This repetition of the same idea 
by two synonymous words, the one of English and the other of 
French origin, is very common in M.E. writers. Thus we read in 
this poem, 1. 2164 lorde and sire, 1. 225 serchid and sought, 11. 3199, 
1936 joye and game, 1. 742 wel and fine. 

p. 4, 1. 118. A carrik was a kind of large ship, called caraca in Italian, 
carraca in Spanish and Portuguese, carraque in French, kraecke in 
Dutch. The etymology is not clear. See Diez, Etymol. Worterb., I. 
112. Halliwell has * carrack, a Spanish galleon. Sometimes English 
vessels of great value and size were so called.' 

p. 4, 1. 119. Destruction, 1. 385 : 

"Par vii fois sont C mil, si 1'estoire ne ment." 

p. 4, 1. 124. his faire daughter Floripas. Floripas is described as 
follows in the Destruction, 11. 252-262 : 

" Aitant es vous la bele ou il n'out qu'enseignier 
Vestue d'un diapre, onke ne vi tant chier, 

NOTES TO pp. 4 6, 11. 128 173. 101 

Ses crins sur ses epaules plus lusoienfc d'or mier, 
Sa char out bele et blanke plus que noifs en fevricr, 
Les oes avoit plus noirs que falcon montenier, 
Et le colour vermaile con rose de rosier, 
La bouche bien scant et douce pour baisier, 
Et les levres vermailes come flour de peskier; 
Les mameles out dures com pomme de pomnier, 
Plus sont blanches que noifs que chiet apres fevrier ; 
Nuls horn ne porroit ja sa grant bealte preisier." 
Compare also the French Fierabras, 11. 2007, et seq. 
p. 4, 1. 128. This line is clearly imitated from the Destruction, 11. 331-2 : 
"En sa main .i. baston que contremont bailie, 

Et manace Fran9ois pour faire les loye." 
Cf. Introduction, p. xxiii. 
p. 5, 1. 131. breddes, "birds" ; I and r very often change their place 

in a word. Thus we find worlde and wrolde, crafti and carfti, etc. 
p. 5, 1. 132. sowdon and sowdan are used promiscuously in the rhymes. 
p. 5, 1. 146. Destruction, 11. 445-6 : 

" N'i remeigne chastels, dongeons ne fermete 

Moustiers ne abbeie que ne soit embrase." 
p. 5, 1. 150. Compare the Destruction, 11. 5034 : 
" L'apostoile de Rome ad la novele oie 

Ke payen sont veiiu els plains de Romanic." 

p. 5, 1. 157. unknowne makes no sense. Perhaps we ought to read 
ylmowne or not unknowne. In the Destruction, 11. 509-513 
" Seignours, ke le feromes, franke gent segnorie? 
Li admirals d'Espaigne a no terre seisie ; 
II en ont ja gastee une moult grant partie : 
Au bref terme serra ceste terre exillie ; 
Qui bon consail saura vienge avant si nous die." 

p. 5, 1. 160. unneth, O.E. unease, " uneasily, scarcely." Chaucer lias 
unnethe, the final e being almost always sounded. See Introduction, 
p. xxxix. 

p. 5, 1. 163. gydoure evidently means " guide, conductor, commander," 
p. 5, 1. 164. houne hounde. On the elition of final d, see Skeat, 
Specimens of Early English, 320/261, and Preface to Havelolc, p. 

p. 5, 1. 165. Ifre^. There is no person of this name in any other 
version. Perhaps this Ifres may be identical with Jeffroi, mentioned 
as a senator of Rome in the Destruction (11. 1122, 1139, 1367). 

p. 6, 1. 170. About the phrase "douce France" compare Leon Gautier's 
note to 1. 15 of his Edition critique de la Chanson de Roland. 

p. 6, 1. 171. Savaris. The author has found this name in the Destruc- 
tion, 1. 540. 

p. 6, 1. 173. Kinge: thinge. In my dissertation on the language and 
the sources of the Sowdan of Babylon, p. 4, bottom, I have shown 

102 NOTES TO pp. 6 8, 11. 175 247. 

that i or y, which corresponds to O.E. y, the umlaut of u, rhymed 
with original i in this poem, which proves that the author wrote in 
the East Midland dialect. But among- the examples collected there 
(p. 5), I ought not to have cited Icing e, because this word is not 
peculiar to the East Midland speech, but occurs with the same form 
in all dialects. See Introduction, p. xxxv. 

p. 6, 11. 175-6 are imitated from the Destruction, 11. 546-7. See Intro- 
duction, p. xxiii. 

p. 6, 1. 176. ner, the common form for nor (267, 1633) in this poem. 
11 Polaynes are knee-pieces in a suit of armour. This term for geriouil- 
leres is found in the household book of Edward I." (Morris, Glossary 
on Sir Gawayne, s. v. polaynes). 

p. 6, 1. 181. tyte, "soon, quick." The editor of the Roxburghe Club 
edition of the Soivdan curiously confounds tyte with tightly = 
" adroitly," occurring in Shakespeare, Merry Wives, I. 3. Tyte is 
derived from O.Icel. tfer, " creber," the neuter of which titt, used 
adverbially means " crebro, celeriter." See Stratmann, p. 561, 
s. v. tid. 

p. 6, 1. 189. Chek = ll cotton, linen or woollen clothe, woven or printed 
in checkers." (Latham, Dictionary, 1876.) 

p. 6, 1. 191. A line seems to be wanting here. There is no rhyme to 

p. 6, 1. 201. randon, " rapidity, force." About the etymology sue 
Diez, Etym. Worterbuch, I. 342, and Skeat, Etym. Diet. 

p. 7, 1. 202. than seems to be an error for thay. 

p. 7, 1. 214. Sarysyns. There are several spellings of the name of 
this people in the poem : Sarsyns, Sarsenys, Sarisyns, Sarasyns. 

p. 7, 1. 222. that day occurs again in 1. 223. The author probably 
only wrote it once; the repetition is most likely due to the scribe. 

p. 7, 1. 224. The following lines are imitated from the Destruction, 
11. 613-619 ; see Introduction, p. xxiii. 

p. 7, 1. 228. The French text (Destruction, 1. 624) has : 
" Maintenant soient tot occis et descoupe. 
Ne voil que mi serjant en soient encombre." 

p. 8, 1. 247. The original meaning of brayde is " start, blow," but 
this makes no sense here, nor can it mean " a boast," as the editor of 
the Roxburghe Club edition explains it. But Mid. Eng. brayde, as 
well as O.E. brcegd or bregd, often signifies " deceit, craft, a cunning 
trick, a fraud ulous contrivance, a stratagem or artifice." See Matzner's 
Worterb. arid Halliwell's Diet. This, I think, is also the meaning of 
brayde in 1. 247. Floripas has been engaged to Lukafer who had 
promised the Soudan, her father, to bring the emperor Charlemagne 
and all his twelve peers to the foot of his throne, in return for the hand 
of his daughter. Floripas, not at all enamoured of the king of Baldas, 
but obeying the will of her father, said she would only agree to 

NOTES TO pp. 8 10, 11. 257 312. 103 

accept him when he had fulfilled these conditions. But she does not 
believe that Laban thinks of ever fulfilling them, she is persuaded 
that those words, those promises made by Laban, are only a bro.yde, 
i. e. a stratagem or artifice devised by him in the hope of winning 
her hand before the performance of his promise. This signification 
of braide has been retained in the Mod. Eng. adjective braid, " crafty, 

p. 8, 1. 257. The Ethiopes, " Ethiopians," are not mentioned in the 
other versions of this romance. On the rhyme Aufricanes : stones 
cf. Introduction, p. xxxv. 
p. 9, 1. 278. Destruction, 1. 908 : 

" Sortibrans a mande Mabon 1'engineor." 
p. 9, 1. 283. depe : tyde. The rhyme becomes perfect if we read wide 

instead of depe. 
p. 9, 1. 286. French text gives, 1. 934 : 

" Si emplirons les fosse's." 
p. 9, 1. 289. Cf . Destruction, 1. 627. " Mahon te benoie," and 1. 925, 

"Mahori te doint honour." 
p. 9, 1. 293. Men myght go even to the walle, compare the Destruction, 

" K'om poet aler al mure." 
and 1. 958 : 

" K'om pooit bien au mur et venir et aler." 

p. 9, 1. 295. assaile, evidently a mistake. Read assaute, as in 1. 2205. 
p. 9, 1. 298. shour, " fight, attack." See Zupitza's note to Guy, 1. 9206. 
sharpe shoures, as in the Destruction of Troy, 1. 5804, " sharp was the 
shoure." Cf. also 1. 950 of this poem, "bataile was sharpe." 
p. 9, 1. 300. stones thai bare, etc. Destruction, 1. 967 : 

" Ces dedens ou grans pieres firent grant lapide." 
p. 9, 1. 303. French text gives (1. 975) : 

" Maintes pieres del mur ont contreval rue." 
p. 9, 1. 306. In the Destruction, 1. 977 : 

" L'asalt dureit eel jour jusque a la nutee." 

p. 9, 1. 307. French : " Payen se sont retrait." Destruction, 1. 979. 
p. 10, 1. 311. For tyde : chidde see Introduction, p. xliii. 

p. 10, 1. 312. 

" Lucafer li traitre traison ad pense, 
Qu'il se contrefera les armes del cite ; 
Et tote si pense sont a Labam demonstre. 
' Sire admirail d'Espaigne,' ceo dist li diffaies, 
' La cite est moult fors, et Fran9ois sont doute ; 
Us defendront le mur, ja mais n'iert entre, 
Que par une voidie que jeo ai porpense. 
II ad dedens un conte de mult grant crualte, 
Savaris ad a non, est de grant parente ; 
Chescon jour il s'en ist, s'est one nous melle. 
De la gent dieifae, mainte teste a coupe." Destr., IL 986-96. 

104 NOTES TO pp. 10 12, 11. 317 380. 

p. 10, 1. 317. Destruction, 1. 997. 

" J'ai bien conu ses armes et les ai avise." 
p. 10, 1. 331. Destruction, 1. 1011 : 

" Tantost le mestre porte aurons moult bien ferme. M 
p. 10, 1. 332. Destruction, 1. 1057 : 

" Mais tot le premier bail ont Sarrasin poeple." 

p. 10, 1. 336. discumfiture, " defeat." See below, note to 1. 1320. 
p. 10, 1. 339. ryme, " to speak loudly, to cry." O.E. hreman or hrflman. 

See Stratmann, p. 322. 
p. 10, 1. 340. French text (1. 1063) : 

" De V. M. ne remendrent que iiiC sans fausser." 
See note to 1. 67. 
p. 10, 1. 341. twelfe : selve ; f and v very often stand for one another, 

see Introduction on p. xliii. 

p. 10, 1. 344. shite : mette. See Ellis, Pronunc., I. 272, and Introduc- 
tion, on p. xliv. Cf. also 11. 2054, 2963, 2960. by than = then ; see 
Matzner's Worterb. p. 217(2). 

p, 11, 1. 346. Estragot or Astragot. This name is not to be found in 
the other versions, it only occurs in the Sowdan and in the Destruc- 
tion ; cf. Destr. 1. 1090-4 : 

" Estragot le poursuit uns geans diffaies 

Teste avoit com senglers, si fu rois corones. 
El main tient .i. mace de fin ascier trempe, 
Un coup a Savaris desur le chef done." 
p. 11, 1. 360. French text reads : 

" Et la novele en ont 1'apostoile conte." Destr. 1. 1101. 
p. 11, 1. 363. consaile : slayne. See Introduction, p. xliii. 
p. 11, 1. 364. See above, 1. 78. 

p. 11,1. 368. erille is not derived from the Erse, as the editor of the 
Roxburghe Club edition supposes. It is simply another spelling for 
erle, which occurs in 1. 1986. O.E. eorl, Mod. Eng. earl. 
p. 11, 1. 369. There must be a gap of some lines here ; between this 
'and the following line a space has been left of about the "width of one 
line ; 1. 370 is written in a much later hand, 
p. 11, 1. 376. lettres translates the French " li brief" (Destr. 1. 1121), 

in haste = French " isnelement " (Destr. 1. 1119). 

p. 11, 1. 377. we ordeyne makes no sense. Read were ordeyned, as in 
1. 2396. Cf. the Destruction, 1. 1133 : 

" Tot troi sont coiement de la cite haste's." 
p. 12, 1. 379. at a posterne. On the posterns compare Skeat, Spec, of 

Eng. Literature, 359, 165. 

p. 12, 1. 380. aboute mydnyghte. French : " Tote la nuit alerent ou 
la lune clarte." Destr. 1. 1136. 

NOTES TO pp. 12 15, 11. 394510. 105 

p. 12, 1. 394. honde of honde, " hand to hand." In the Glossary of the 
Roxburghe Club ed. we read : " Cast. Wherewithal to throw." This 
is the sense of cast in 1. 2471 but it occurs witli two other meanings. 
In 1. 394 cast signifies " device, plot, intention," as often elsewhere. 
In 11. 4GO, 2091, 2099, 2467, 2603, 2792, it means " the act of throw- 
ing, the throw." 

p. 12, 1. 400. hevy, "afflicted, sorrowful." So in 11. 3037, 3224. 

p. 13, 1. 427. Estagote, miswritten for Estragote, cf. 11. 346, 352, and 
Destr. 1. 1090. brake on three, cf. 11. 2234, 1388, 1269. 

p. 13, 1. 441. Sarsyns : Romaynes. See Introduction, p. xliv. 

p. 14, 1. 464. oost does not rhyme with beste. Both the sense and the 
rhyme will be improved if we read rest for oost. 

p. 14, 1. 473. As it stands, the line makes no sense. This is written 
indistinctly in the MS., so that we may read either this or thus; 
the sense requires the latter, which I think is the true reading. Or 
else we may keep this and write idone instead of it done. 

p. 15, 1. 488. aras. Read a ras, and see note to I. 1349. 

p. 15, 1. 491. and armes makes no sense, as we are hardly entitled to 
take armes for the 2nd person plural imperative ; which in this 
poem always ends in -eth. See Introduction, p. xxxvii. I think we 
must change and into as. For the explanation of the phrase " as 
armes," see note on 1. 2660. 

p 15, 1. 495. The Ascopars or Ascopartes are mentioned in the 
Destruction as the subjects of the Soudan. The name of this people 
is not to be found in any other version. Asiopars is merely a clerical 
error for Ascopars, which may be easily accounted for by remembering 
that in the MSS. the characters c and t are very often formed almost 
alike. The true spelling Ascopars is found in 11. 2196, 2648 ; cf. also 
the Destruction, 11. 98, 426. Nothing is known of the origin and the 
home of the Ascoparts. That they must have been men of great bodily 
strength follows from 1. 496, " for ye be men of mighte," and 1. 
2645, " that bene boolde and hardy to fighte." Compare also what 
is said about them by Donne, in his first satire : 

" Those Askaparts, men big enough to throw 

Charing-cross for a bar." 

It is worthy while to note that a giant, called Askapard, occurs in 
the romance of Sir Bevis of Hamptoun. See Ellis, Metr. Romances, 

. ed. Halliwell, p. 263. 

p. 15, 1, 500. Ho is evidently a mistake for we. rere-warde, " rear- 
guard ; " the van is called fowarde, 11. 502, 732, the main body the 
medyl partye, 1. 735. 

p. 15, 1. 504. than : gon. See Introduction, p. xxxv. 

p. 15, 1. 510. oon makes no sense. I suspect the reading of this and 
the following stanza is quite corrupt. If 11. 510 and 511 should 
belong to different stanzas, the enjambement, or continuation of the 

106 NOTES TO pp. 15, 16, 11. 514 532. 

sense from one stanza to another, would be unusually strong. I am 
therefore inclined to think that originally a stanza began at 1. 510, 
and that there is a line wanting after 1. 509. which contained the 
rhyme to bon (1. 508). The scribe noticing the absence of rhyme 
tried to restore it himself. Adding oon to 1. 510, he made it rhyme 
with bon (1. 508). Having thus destroyed the rhyme of 11. 510 and 
512 (Alisaundre : Cassaundre, as in 1. 984), he added gaye to 1. 512, 
which now rhymed to 1. 514, where he still added tofraye. In order 
to get a rhyme to 1. 518, he changed in 1. 516 the original laye 
(: Romayne) into Ian ("he ceased, stopped"), and wrote "to" the 
grounde instead of "on" (cf. 1. 1186) or "a" (cf. 11. 533,435) the 
grounde, connecting thus these words with 1. 515, whereas originally 
they belonged to there he laye, or as there also may have been 
added by the scribe to he laye. If now we read with mayne instead 
tfful evene, in 1. 521, we get a perfect rhyme to 1. 519 ; 1. 520 having 
lost its rhyming line, he made it rhyme, by adding than to 1. 522, 
which originally rhymed to 1. 524. Now to get a rhyme to 1. 524 he 
composed and inserted himself 1. 526. Therefore I think the original 
reading of these two stanzas ran as follows : 
510 Sir Ferumbras of Alisaundre 

That bolde man was in dede, 
Uppon a steede Cassaundre 
He roode in riche weede. 
514 Sir Bryer of Poyle a Romayne 

He bare through with a ppere ; 
Dede on the ground [there] he laye, 

Might he no more hem dere. 
618 That saw Huberte, a worthy man, 

Howe Briere was islayne, 
Ferumbras to quite than 

To him he rode with mayne. 
522 With a spere uppone his shelde 

Stiffly gan he strike ; 
The shelde lie brake imiddis the feelde, 

His hawberke wolde not breke. . 
526 Ferumbras was agreved tho, &c. 
On the rhyme Romaijm ; laye (1. 514) cf. 11. 536, 890. 
p. 15, 1. 514. Bryer of Poyle does not occur in any of the other 

p. 15, 1. 516. Ian, preterite of Zm, " to cease ; " more common in the 

compound llin, contracted from * be-lin. 
p. 15, 1. 517. might he no more hem dere. On the order of words, cf. 11. 

2954, 649, 2435. 
p. 16, 1. 520. qwite, " to requite, reward, retaliate, pay off." See below 

note to 1. 780. 
p. 16, 1.531. On stronge (O.E. strang) : istonge (O.E. gestungen), see 

Introduction, p. xxxv. 
p. 16, 1. 532. astraye, " out of the right way or proper place, running 

NOTES TO pp. 16 19, 11. 541 650. 107 

about without guidance." 0. French estraier, which is derived from 
Latin ex strada, see Diez, Etym. Worterb. I. 402 ; II. 29G. 

p. 16, 1. 541. werre, " war," seems to owe its origin to the French 
guerre, as it is not found in O.E. It appears for the first time in the 
Saxon Chronicle, he coude, " he knew, had endured." See Matzner's 
Grammatik, II. 262. 

p. 17, 1. 555. It is evident that all ane must be a corruption. Perhaps 
the conjecture of the editorof the lioxb. Club edition, supposing all rafe 
to be the true reading, may be right. But he is certainly wrong to 
identify this rafe with the rafe in 1. 866, which, being the infinitive 
mood of a verb, cannot be taken for an adjective or adverb, which 
the sense seems to require in 1. 555. Hallivvell, s. v. Raff, gives : 
" in raff = speedily." There is a Danish adjective, rap, "brisk, 
quick." Cf. Skeat, Etym. Diet. s. v. raffle and rap. 

p. 17, 1. 570. certaine spoils the rhyme. The rhyme becomes perfect 
if we read without faile, as in 1. 322. 

p. 17, 1. 573. aplicjht, "on plight, on my word." See Zupitza's note 
to Guy, 1. 8541. It is often used as an expletive. 

p. 17, 1. 580. who the sowclan, etc. = who is the Sovvdan. The verb of 
the sentence is wanting; cf. note to 1. 2156. 

p. 17, 1. 587. French text gives : 

" Et Guion de Bourgoyne ad a lui appe!6 
Fils est de sa soror et de sa parente 
Cosins, vous en irres. . ." 

Destr. 11. 1179, et scq. 

p. 18, 1. 613. hight=(l) was called," (2) " promised," (3) " called " 
(partic. past). It is the preterite tense of haten, hoten, or hat (1. 3154). 
Cf. Zupitza's note to Guy, 1. 169. 

p. 18, 1. 614. than seems to be a corruption, and I think must be left 
out. Florip is the genitive of Florip, which occurs as a nominative 
in 11. 2075, 1527. There is another nominative Floripas which forms 
the genitive Floripas, 11. 1659, 2350. 

p. 19, 1. 625. Isres, the name of the " chief porter of the town," who 
betrayed the city, only occurs in the Sowdan ; in the Destruction the 
same treachery is committed by Tabour, D. 1203. 

"Tins traitre del cit que del porte out les cles." 

p. 19, 1. 636. bandon, literally (i proclamation," means "power, dis- 
posal." See Skeat, Etym. Diet. s. v. abandon. 

p. 19, 1. 647. French : 

" Le chief al portier trenche," Destr. 1. 1236. 

p. 19, 1. 648. In the Destr. 1. 1244-5 : 

" Dieux " fist il " te maldie, et que font engendre, 
Kar traitour au darain averont mal dehe." 

p. 19, 1. 650. met, a mistake for mot, which we find in 11. 1582, 2334, 

108 NOTES TO pp. 20 22, 11. 663 744. 

p. 20, 1. 663. Cf. the Destr. 1. 1260 : 

" Al moustier de saint Piere est Fierenbras ales." 

p. 20, 1. 665. the crosse, the crown, the nailes bente. The relics 
mentioned in the Destruction are the crown of thorns, the cross, the 
nails, and the " signe," which, as I have shown in my Dissertation 
(pp. 45, 46), does not mean " inscription of the cross," but is the 
Greek frti'uv, arid signifies "the shroud, or winding-sheet, of the 
Lord, suaire, sudatorium." In the French Fierabras, as well as in 
Syr Ferumbras, no mention is made of the cross. 

p. 20, 1. 673. thare instead of there would improve the rhyme. See 

Introduction, p. xxxv. 
p. 20, 1. 678. fade, O.E. fadian, " dispose, suit." Stratmann, p. 187. 

p. 20, 1. 679. frankencense = " pure incense." Compare Skeat, Etym. 

p. 20, 1. 686. roial, " excellent." Cf. " roial spicerye," Chaucer, ed. 

Morris, III. 135/142. 
p. 21, 1. 699. Alle on aflame that cite was; cf. the French : 

"Kant il vindrent a Rome si virent luy porte oueree 
La flambe en la cite moult granment alumee. 
Pour grant chalour qu'i fu n'i povoient entrer." 

(Destr. 11. 1378-80.) 
p. 21, 1. 723. The Destruction, 11. 13841408, has : 

" Si dirrai de Oharlon, le fort roi corone. 
De par totes ses terres avoit ses gens mande, 
N'i remest dus ne quiens ne baron el regne, 
Qu'il assemble ne soient a Paris la cite. 
Quant il i furent tous venu et ajouste,' 
L'emperere de France en halt en ad parle : 
' Seignours, or escoutes, si vous dirrai verte, 
Li admirails d'Espaigne a no pais gaste 
Et oue lui CM sarrazin diffaie. 
II ont ensegie Rome, m'admirable cite, 
Tot le pais entour ont il pour voir robbe ; 
Si jeo ne les soccour tot 1'auront il gaste.' 
' Sire,' firent li princes, ' a vostre volonte : 
Nous ne vous failliromes tant que poons durer.' 
Adonc en ad li rois grant joie demene. 
Quant si gent furent prest a complir son pense, 
Adonc s'en est li rois eralment aprestes 
Et si firent li contes de France le regne. 
Quant sont appareillie si sont enchemine : 
iii C mil chevaliers ad li rois el barne 
Oliviers porte sa baneer que ben leu ad guie, 
Rollans fu en arriere, li vassals adures. 
De soccoure Guion s'en est li rois hastes. 
Tant ont il nuit et jor chivalche et erre. 
Qu'il sont en Romenie, n'i ont reine tire." 

p. 22, 1. 744. He knewe the baner of France. The French text has : 

NOTES TO pp. 23 25, 11. 766 836. 109 

" Guis parceut le baniere le roi de saint Dine, 
Encontre lui chevalche, la novele ont conte, 
Come la forte cite li payen ont gaste : 
La corone et les clous d'iloec en sont robbe 
Et les altres reliques. . ." 

p. 23, 1. 766. for, " notwithstanding, in spite of." So also in 1. 

p. 23, 1. 771. Destr., 1. 1425:' 

' Li vens en fiert es voiles que les a ben guies." 

p. 23, 1. 776. for south, " forsooth," cf. 11. 2014, 897, 2024, 1025, 2246. 

p. 23, 1. 778. Frencli : " il sont en terre entre." 

p. 23, 1. 779. fonde: grounde. fonde is spelt founde in 11. 1857, 3020, 
344, 2353, 2363. 

p. 23, 1. 780. stroyeth = "destroy eth." "Compounds of Romance 
origin, the first part of which is a preposition, or words derived from 
such, often mutilate, or even entirely drop the preposition " (Zupitza's 
note to Guy, 1. 576). Thus we have sail, 1. 385, " assail ;" 
longeth, 1. 3254, = " belongeth ;" slcomfited, 1. 1320, = " diskomfited," 
11. 336, 1464 ; quite, 1. 520, = " requite ; " perceived, 1. 2659, = " aper- 
ceived;" saut, 11. 619, 2200, = " assaut," 1. 615; ginne, 1. 2326, = 
" enginne," 1. 333 ; playne, 1. 177, = " complayn ; " shaped, 1. 2049, = 
"askaped," 1. 2218. 

p. 23, I. 787. Frencli : " iiiC mile Francois." 

p. 24, 1. 812. ychoon : Mahounde. See Introduction, p. xlii. 

p. 24, 1. 820. strolce : stoupe. See Introduction, p. xliii. 

p. 24, 1. 820. stenyed, u stunned," not from O.Fr. estaindre, as the 
editor of the Roxb. Club ed. suggests, but from O.E. stunian, " per- 
cellere, stupefacere." See Stratmann, p. 540. 

p. 24, 1. 835. Observe the subject expressed twice ; cf. 11. 723, 1031, 
1682, 1814, 2331. 

p. 25, 1. 836. Neymes. This celebrated hero has been especially famous 
by the advices and counsels of which even in matters of greatest 
difficulty he was never at a loss. "Tel conseiller n'orent onques li 
Franc," i. e. the French had never such a counsellor. This passage 
of the romance of Aspremont may be looked upon as containing the 
portrait of Neymes as we find him described in all poems. The story 
of his birth and youth is in the romance of Aubri le Bourgoing. He 
was the son of Gasselin, king of Bavaria. Cassile, an usurper, is 
about to seize the throne and to kill the young Neymes, when 
Charlemagne comes to his help and re-establishes the legitimate 

p. 25, 1. 836. Ogier Danoys (cf. 1. 1687) is one of the twelve peers in 
this poem. His life is contained in the French poem of the 
" Chevallerie Ogier" by Raimbert de Paris. According to that 
romance Ogier had been delivered in his youth to Charlemagne as 

110 NOTES TO pp. 25, 26, 11. 845 875. 

a pledge to secure the discharge of the tribute which his father 
Geffroi, king of Denmark, was bound to pay to the emperor. The 
French ambassadors having once been insulted by Geffroy, Charle- 
magne swears to make Ogier pay with his life the offence done by 
his father, and Ogier is going to be executed when the emperor, 
following the urgent requests of messengers arrived from Rome, 
suddenly starts to deliver this city from the Saracens. On this 
expedition the French army is hard pressed by the enemy, but Ogier 
by his eminent prowess and valour enables Charles to enter Rome. 
He now is pardoned and becomes the favourite of the emperor. 
Several years afterwards Ogier's son Baudouinet is slain by Chariot, 
the son of Charlemagne, as they were quarrelling about a party of 
chess. Ogier, in order to revenge his son, goes as far as to attack 
Charlemagne himself, but on the point of being taken a prisoner, he 
escapes and flees to Didier, king of Lornbardy. Charles makes war 
on Didier, and after a long struggle Ogier is taken and imprisoned at 
Reims, where he is going to be starved, when a sudden invasion of the 
Saracens obliges Charlemagne again to have recourse to the courage 
and valour of the Dane. Ogier delivers France by slaying the giant 
Brehus. To reward him for the service done to his country, Charles 
gives him the county of Hainaut, where afterwards, as the poem tells 
us, he died in the renown of holiness. 

p. 25, 1. 845. it = " hit." Cf. note to 1. 41. 

p. 25, 1. 847-50. These four lines seem to be incorrect. As they stand, 
the three first lines are rhymed together, and there is no rhyme to 
the fourth. The diction of the whole passage, which cannot be said 
to be an grammatical, is nevertheless wanting in precision and 

p. 25, 1. 866. rafe = rave. 

p. 25, 1. 868. Moun-joye is the name of Charlemagne's sword in this 
poem (cf. 11. 3111,850), whereas, according to all other romances, the 
emperor's sword was called Joyeuse. Mounjoie or Montjoie was the 
name of the French standard* it was likewise used as the battle-cry 
of the French, cf. Fierabras, 1. 1703, and Syr Ferumbras, 11. 2285, 
2652, 4577, 4727. The sword Joyeuse had been forged by the 
celebrated Weland or Galand, as we read in the French Fierabras, 

1. 635 : Et Galans fist Floberge & 1'acier atrempe, 
Hauteclere et Joiouse, ou moult ot dignite ; 
Cele tint Karlemaines kmguement en certe." 
Compare Gaston Paris, Histoire Poetique, p. 374. 

p. 26, 1. 875. Durnedale. This renowned sword was forged by the 
famous Galand or Weland. The French Fierabras (1. 645) is the 
only romance which attributes it to Munifican. It had been given 
by Charlemagne to Roland as the best of his warriors. As to the 
exploits achieved with it. Roland enumerates them himself in that 
celebrated passage, where in his death-hour he tries to break 

NOTES TO pp. 26, 27, 11. 876 939. Ill 

Durnedale to prevent it from falling into the hands of the Saracens 
(Chanson de Roland, 11. 2316-2337). The steel blade of this sword 
has been highly praised for its extraordinary hardness. It had been 
tried by Charlemagne himself on that " perron," or steel block before 
the emperor's palace in Aix-la-Chapelle (see Histoire Pcetique, p. 
370). Durnedale proved good as well as Almace, the sword of 
Turpin. But Courtain, Ogier's sword, was then shortened by half a 
foot. According to 1. 1407 of the Sowdan, Durnedale broke ; but 
this incident has been mentioned nowhere else. Of. Syr Ferumbras, 
1. 997, and lierabras, 1. 1740. 

p. 26, 1. 876. romme, spelt also rome, rowme, roum, is Mod. E. room, 
O.E. rum, " spatium." 

p. 26, 1. 880. dinge ; read gan dlnge. Dinge is the infinitive mood, 
but the sense requires a preterite tense. The preterite of dinge is 
dong, dongen, which occurs in 1. 1263. But as dinge cannot be 
altered here, on account of the rhyme, the passage is easily corrected 
by adding gan = " he began to strike, he struck." 

p. 26, 1. 884. Allnreynes of Loreynes and Aleroyse (1. 1699) are probably 
identical. Then Alloreynes would be an error of the scribe, who 
having already the following Loreynes in his mind wrote Alloreynes 
instead of A lleroyse. 

p. 26, 1. 900. in fay = " truly," fay == " faith, truth." O.Fr. fei or 
feid) Lat. fides. 

p. 26, 1. 904-5. Cf. Chanson de Roland, 11. 1903-4 : 

" Rollanz est proz e Oliviers est sages, 
Ambedui unt merveillus vasselage." 

p. 27, 1. 913. I cannot tell what treyumpU means, or whether it be a 

p. 27, 1. 939. This kind of prayer or apostrophe addressed to the God 
of War is certainly taken from another English work, which I am 
unable to trace, but which must have been much known at the time 
of our author, as we find it referred to in different authors. That it 
has been taken from another poem is proved by some phrases of this 
prayer which are somewhat obscure or rather unintelligible here, and 
which we certainly should be able to explain if we knew the original 
context in which they occurred. Then the form hase (1. 940) is 
somewhat suspicious, as it is the only instance of the 2nd person 
singular present dropping the t, which it has always in this poem. 
The arrangement, too, of the following stanzas differs from that 
generally observed in the Sowdan. If we consider our poem as 
composed in eight-line stanzas (but see Introduction, p. xl) we 
mostly find the 1st and 3rd lines rhyming together, then the 2nd and 
4th, the 5th and 7th, and finally the 6th and 8th, so that four 
different rhyme-endings are necessary to one stanza. If now we 
consider the stanza from 1. 939 to 946, we only, have two rhyme- 
endings, all the pair lines rhyming together, and all the odd ones 

112 NOTES TO pp. 27, 28, 11. 939 966. 

together. In 11. 947 to 950 the 1st and 4th rhyme together, whilst 
the 2nd and 3rd are paired off together. 11. 939-941 we find alluded 
to in Chaucer, see Introduction, p. xlvi, and the Prioress's Tale, ed. 
Skeat (Clarendon Press), p. xvii. Compare also Lindsay, The Historic 
of Squyer Meldrum, 1. 390 : 

" Like Mars, the God Armipotent." 

p. 27, 1. 939. rede Mars. " Bocaccio uses the same epithet in the 
opening of his Teseide : ' rubiconde Marte.' Rede refers to the 
colour of the planet." Morris, note to Knight's Tale, 1. 889. 

p. 27, 1. 940. Baye never means "sword," as the editor of the 
Roxburghe Club ed. renders it, nor does this translation make any 
sense here at all ; baye signifies " a wide, open room or space in 
a building." See Matzner's Worterbuch, p. 164. Morris, in the 
Glossary to the Alliterative Poems, has " bay = recess. The original 
meaning seems to be opening of any kind. Cf. bay, space in a 
building between two main beams." Halliwell, s. v. bay, has : '' A 
principal compartment or division in the architectural arrangement 
of a building." It appears to be etymologically the same word as 
Ital. baja, French baie, " bay, gulf, harbour," the French bale being 
equally used for " opening of any kind." The Catalan form for baie 
is badia, which corresponds to the verb badar, meaning " to open." 
See Diez, Etym. Wdrterb. I. 46. Bay is retained in the Mod. E. 
compound " bay-window." Cf. also the Frencli " la ftee dune fenestre" 
cited by Carpentier-Ducange, s. v. beare. With regard to the 
signification of trende, the editor of the Roxb. Club ed. wrongly 
guessed again in explaining it as " drawn " or " trenchant, cutting." 
Trende means " turned, bent, vaulted in the form of an arch." See 
Halliwell, p. '887, and Stratmann, p. 572, *. v. trenden (= " volvere "). 
But I am at a loss how to explain why Mars is said to have put up 
his throne in an arched recess, or compartment, of a building. 

p. 28, 1. 957. sotne, a clerical error for sone. 

p. 28, 1. 965. prymsauns of grene vere = " the earliest days of green 
spring" (Glossary to the Roxb. Club ed.). This may be the sense; 
but what is the literal meaning of. prymsauns? If we had prymtauns, 
cr prymtaunce, we might be inclined to take it for a corruption of 
French printemps, as we find pastaunce or pastance corrupted from 
passe-temps. (See Skeat, Spec, of Eng. Literature, 460/149 and 427/ 
1096.) Cf. also the Romaunt of the Rose, 11. 3373-74 : " At prime 
temps, Love to manace, Ful ofte I have been in this caas." Or is 
prymtauns perhaps a clerical error for entrauns or entraunce ? This 
would then make us think of such passages as the following one : 
" Che fti ou mois de mai, a I' entree d'este", 
Que florissent cil bos et verdissent cil pre." 

lierabras, 11. 5094-5. 

p. 28, 1. 966. spryngyn, the only instance of the 3rd person present 
plural ending in -yn (for the common -en). This perhaps is due to 

NOTES TO pp. 28 31, 11. 973 1067. 113 

tlie scribe thinking already of the following yn in begynne. But it 
must be stated that the whole passage is rather obscure. Neither the 
meaning of springyn and begynne nor the connection of 1. 966 with 
the following lines is very clear. Floures occurring twice looks also 
somewhat suspicious. Moreover, these two stanzas do not well suit 
the context and might easily be done without ; they are evidently 
borrowed from some other poem. Observe besides the alliteration in 
/loures, /Hthe. /reshly. 

p. 28, 1. 973. lithe, "to hear." O.Icel. lilySa, " auscultare." ttrat- 
mann, s. v. hltyen, p. 315. 

p. 29, 1. 993. lese miswritten for lefe, which sense and rhyme require, 
and which occurs in 11. 832, 1526. 

p. 29, 1. 995. bassatours (?) = " vavassours, vavasors." 

p. 29, 1. 999. Inde Major. The meaning of Major is not clear. Cf. 
besides Chanson de Roland, ed. Gautier, Glossarial Index, s. v. Major. 
Compare also Destr. 1. 690 : terre Majour. 

p. 29, 1. 1000. The great number of geographical names contained in 
these two lines is probably due to the favourite habit of mediaeval 
romance writers, who thou-ght that they showed their geographical 
knowledge by introducing long strings of names. Thus we find in 
Web. Rom. II. 1. 632 et seq., the names of sixteen towns mentioned 
in fourteen lines, all of which are said to have been visited by 
Richard the Lion-hearted. Again in the same poem, 11. 3679, et seq., 
we find the names of thirteen countries occurring in ten lines. Cf. 
also King Alls., Web. Rom. I. 11. 1440 and 1692. Often, too, 
geographical names seem to be inserted on account of the rhyme, as 
Chaunder in 1. 123. and Europe in 1. 1001. 

p. 29, 1. 1008. Camalyon, "meaning, probably, the camelopardalis. The 
blood of a cameleon would go a very little way towards satisfying a 
thirsty Saracen " (Ellis, Metr. R. 387). Perhaps also the poet did 
not know much of either of these two kinds of animals, and all he 
wished was to cite an animal with some outlandish name. 

p. 30, 1. 1025. southe: wrothe. The spelling sothe occurs in 11. 2014, 
2024, 2246, 2719. There must be a lacuna of one or more lines here. 
The rhyme-word to dute (1. 1024) is wanting; the context also 
evidently shows that 11. 1025 and 1026, as they stand together, make 
no sense. It is worth while to add that the next five lines, contrary 
to the common usage of our poem, are all rhymed together. 

p. 30, 1. 1040. Observe Paens. i. e. " pagans," used as a proper name 
here; cf. the Destr. 1. 98, and Fierabras, 1. 5673. 

p. 31, 1. 1051. For a description of Ferumbras, compare Fierabras, 11. 
578 et seq., and 11. 611 et seq., and Syr Ferumbras, 1. 550. 

p. 35, 1. 1060. trwes = trues, truce. 

p. 31, 1. 1067. sex. So in the French Fierabras, 1. 84 : 
" Ja n'en refuserai, par Mahom, jusqu'a vi." 

114 NOTES TO pp. 31, 32, 11. 1071 1096. 

In the English Ferumbras, 1. 102, we read : 

" And J?O} J?er come twelve, J?e beste of J?y fered, 

I will kuj?e on hem my mi^t, & dyngen hem al to douste." 
p. 31, 1. 1071. in fere =" together." fere, literally "one who fares 
with one," means " a travelling companion, a comrade, a mate ; a 
company." O.E. (ge-)fera. 
p. 31, 1. 1074. man =" bondman, subject, vassal." So in 11. 1354 

p. 31, 1. 1077. childe, " young knight, young man." See Skeat's note 

to Sir Thopas (Clarendon Press), 162/2020. 
p. 31, 1. 1084. Cf. the French text : 

" Sire, ce dist Rollans, chertes, tort en aves, 
Car, par icel seigneur Ki Dix est appeles, 
Je vauroie moult miex que fuissies desmenbres 
Ke jou en baillasse armes ne ne fuisse adobes. 
Hier quant paien nous vindrent & Tissue des gues 
L. mile furent, a vers helmes jesm&s, 
Grans caus en soustenimes sur les escus bandes ; 
Oliviers mes compaigns i fu le jour navrSs. 
Tout fuissons desconfit, c'est fines ve rite's, 
Quant vous nous secourustes e vos riches Dame's, 
Et paien s'en tournerent les frains abandonnes. 
Quant fumes repairie" as loges et as tres, 
Puis te vantas le soir, quant tu fus enivr6s, 
Que li viel chevalier c'avoies amene 
L'avoient moult miex fait que li joule d'ass^s, 
Asses en fui le soir laidement rampone's." 

(11. 144-161.) 

Compare also Syr Ferumlras, 11. 144-163 
p. 32, 1. 1088. of = " on account of." 

p. 32, 1. 1092. According to most of the old romances Roland was 
invulnerable. He never lost any blood by a wound but on tho 
occasion when he was beaten by Charlemagne 

" For trois goutes sans plus, quant Charles par irour 

Le feri de son gant que le virent plousour." 
See Histoire Poetique, p. 264. 
The French text (11. 166-170) runs as follows : 

" Karles trait son gant destre, qui fu & or parSs 
Fiert le comte Reliant en travers sur le nes ; 
Apres le caup en est li sans vermaus vo!6s. 
Rollans jete le main au branc qui est Ietr6s ; 
Ja en ferist son oncle se il n'en fust ostes." 

p. 32, 1. 1094. atye, "to pay for, suffer for." In Mod. Eng. alye is 
corrupted into abide. See Morris, Gloss, to Chaucer (Clarend. Press), 
s. v. aboughte. 

p. 32, 1. 1096. Double negatives like never none are pretty common in 
mediaeval writers. Cf. in the Sowdan, 11. 1876, 2181, 2199, 2279, 

NOTES TO pp. 32 34, 11. 1103 1164. 115 

p. 32, 1. 1103. at one, " of one mind, agreement." Cf. King Horn, ed. 
Lumby, 1. 925 : 

" At on he was wijj J?e king." 

Hence Mod. Eng. atone, " to set at one, to reconcile." See Zupitza's 
note to Guy, 1. 5308. 

p. 32, 1. 1106. to make voydaunce, the same as to voide, 1. 1768 = " to 
quit, to depart from, to get rid of." 

p. 32, 1. 1110. withoute more = " without delay, immediately." more 
is O.E. mara, comparative to micel ; it is not the Latin more. See 
Zupitza's note to Guy, 1. 719. 

p. 33, 1. 1126. renewed, "tied." Fr. renouer, from nceud = Lat. nodius. 
It is to be distinguished from renewed = " renovated," which occurs 
in 1. 2200. 

p. 32, 1. 1128. hidur is spelt hider in 11. 810, 833, etc. 

p. 32, 1. 1135. Generyse. In the other versions Olyver calls himself 
Garin. See Introduction on p. xxxiii. 

p. 32, 1. 1141. lerne, " to teach." See Zupitza's note to Guy, 1. 6352. 
scole, O.E. scul, Mod. Eng. school, means here " style, or manner of 
fighting." It must not be confounded with schole, O.E. scolu, " troop, 
band," Mod. Eng. shoal. Cf. also The Song of Roland, 129/786. 

p. 33, 1. 1145. myghty men of honde. So in 1. 3029. The same phrase 
occurs in M.H.Gr. " ein belt ze sinen handen" which is explained as 
meaning, " a hero [or one who becomes a hero] by the strength of 
his hands or arms." See Janicke's note to Biterolf, 5078, and 
Grimm's Grammatik, IV. 727 note. The expression seems to be 
originally French ; cf. Meon, Fabliaux, III. 478 : " chevaliers de sa 
main"', Renard, ed. Martin, 1. 21409: " proedom de sa main." 
Cf. also Roman des Eles, ed. Scheler, 1. 433, where main is wrongly 
explained by the editor. 

p. 33, 1. 1151. plete, " plead." The rhyme leads us to suppose that 
the author pronounced plede, which indeed is the more common 

p. 33, 1. 1154. and makes no sense here. thenkes must also be 
incorrect, the 3rd person present singular always terminating in -eth 
in this poem, and not in -es. Read as thenketh me ; thenketh me 
occurs in 1. 465. 

p. 34, 1. 1158. pight, "pitched, fixed." The infinitive mood is picclien ; 
cf. O.Dutch picken, O.Icel. pikka, " pungere, pangere." 

p. 34, 1. 1159. In the French Fierabras, 1. 606 et seq., Oliver also 
assists the Saracen to put on his gear. This point is not mentioned 
in the Ashmolean version, see Introduction, p. xxviii. 

p. 34, 1. 1163. worthed up, l( became up, got up, mounted." It is the 
past tense of the verb worthen, O.E. weorSan, " to become." Another 
past tense of this verb is worth, 1. 1204. 

p 34, 1. 1164. areest, or arest = "a rest, or support for the spear when 

I 2 

116 NOTES TO pp. 34 36, 11. 1167 1250. 

couched for the attack " (Morris). Originally = " stoppage, waiting, 
readiness." Cf. Matzner's Worterbuch, p. 107. 

p. 34, 1. 1167. as fire of thonder, cf. dinte of thondir in 1. 1207. 

p. 34, 1. 1168. to-braste, "burst in pieces." The prefix to-, answering 
to Germ, zer-, has the force of " in twain, asunder." 

p. 34 ; 1. 1170. threste, O.E. \rcBstan, " premere, trudere." The author 
probably pronounced thraste, which will improve the rhyme. 

p. 34, 11. 1179-80. upon the hcde (blank in MS) the hede. This is 
evidently a mistake of the scribe ; sore, 1. 1180, too, which does not 
rhyme with crowne, is probably miswritten for sone. The rhyme as 
well as the context shows that the true reading is.: 

" Olyver him hitte again 
Upon the hede than fulle sone 

He carfe awaye with myght and mayne 
The cercle that sate uppon his crowne." 

p. 34, 1. 1182. About the cercle, see Dernay, Le Costume de guerre, 
p. 132. " Non seulement le cone du heaume (helrne) est borde par ce 
cercle, mais il est parfois renforce dans toute sa hauteur par deux 
aretes placees 1'une devant, 1'autre derriere, ou par qu'atre bandes de 
metal ornementees (de verroteries), venant aboutir et se croiser a son 
sommet." crowne means the " tonsure of the head," then topically 
" the skull or head." 

p. 34, 1. 1185. the botteles of bawme are not mentioned anywhere else 
in the Sowdan ; the other versions tell us that the balm contained in 
those vessels was the same as that with which Christ was anointed. 
Cf. Syr Ferumbras, 11. 510 517 ; and see Introduction, p. vi and xxix. 

p. 34, 1. 1191. the river. According to the oldest version of the poem 
the whole combat took place on the shore of the Tiber, near Rome. 
See Introduction, pp. xi and xxxii. Cf. Fierabras, 1. 1049 : 

" Pres fu du far de Home, ses a dedes jetes," 
and Philippe Mousket, I. 4705-6 : 

" Les .ii. barius qu'a Rome prist, 

Si les gieta enmi le Toivre." 

In the Sowdan as well as in the Ashmole MS. there is no mention of 
Oliver's drinking of the bairn before throwing it into the water, which 
both the Proven9al and the French versions tell us he did. Cf. 
Fierabras, 11. 1031 1048, and the Proven9al version, 11. 1335, 
et seq. 

p. 35, 1. 1210. fille, " fel." 

p. 35, 11. 1221. dere spoils the rhyme. Read "/ree." 

p. 36, 1. 1250. Cousyn to King Charles, cf. 1. 1117. In 11. 1499 and 
1671 Oliver is said to be nephew to Charlemagne. He was the 
son of Renier de Gennes, who according to Sir Ferumbras, 1. 652 : 
" Y am Charlis emys sone " was the uncle of Charlemagne. In the 
poem Girar de Viane we find Oliver among the enemies of the 

NOTES TO pp. 36 38, 11. 1258 1320. 117 

Emperor and fighting with Roland in close combat ; they are at 
length stopped by divine interposition. Then began a close friend- 
ship which lasted till their death at Roncesvaux. Oliver's sister 
Aude was betrothed to Roland. See, besides, Syr Ferumbras, 11. 
422, 1297, 1305, 1354. 

p. 36, 1. 1258. harde grace, " misfortune," cf. 1. 2790. 

p. 36, 1. 1259. Persagyn. This name does not occur in any other 
version again, except in the Destruction, where one Persagon appears 
in the list of the Saracen barons. But it is not stated there that he 
is uncle to Ferumbras ; cf. besides Fierabras, 11. 2614, 2784. 

p. 37, 1. 1263. Observe the four consecutive feminine rhymes. 

p. 37, 1. 1277. The scene as related here widely differs from that 
described in the Ashmolean version. In the Soivdone, Oliver gets 
hold of the sword which is u trussed on Ferurnbras's stede." In the 
Ashmolean poem it is not Oliver who is disarmed, but Ferumbras, 
and Oliver allows him to pick up his weapon again. This in itself 
furnishes us an argument for conjecturing that the author of the 
Sowdon did not follow, or even know of, the Ashmolean version. In 
the French poem, as well as in the Provei^al, it is likewise Oliver 
who is disarmed. If in those poems we find mentioned besides that 
Ferumbras offered his enemy to take up his sword again an incident 
not related in the Sowdan we do not consider this to disprove our 
supposition that the French version was the source of the Sowdan, as 
we may consider our author in this case simply to have adhered to 
his favourite practice of shortening his original as much as possible, 
so far as no essential point is concerned. Cf. the French Fierabras, 
11. 12891346. 

p. 37, 1. 1286. saught is a misprint for raught. 

p. 37, 1. 1289. He thought he quyte. quyte may be explained as 
standing for quyted, or else he must be changed into to : He thought 
to quyte, the latter reading is perhaps preferable. We find in 1. 3110 a 
passage agreeing almost exactly with this. 

p. 38, 1. 1298. Qwyntyn. The name of this Saint does not occur in 
any other version of our romance. 

p. 38, 1. 1308. There is no mention made of this prayer in the 
Ashmolean version, the Sowdan here (11. 1308 1340) agrees again 
with the French Fierabras, 11. 1164 1244 (and with the Proven9al 
poem, 1. 1493, et seq.), with the only difference, that the prayer which 
Charlemagne addressed to God, in order to bestow the victory upon 
the Christian hero, is much longer in F, and is stuffed with so many 
details of the Scripture, that in some way it may be regarded as a 
succinct account of the whole life of the Lord. 

p. 38, 1. 1320. skomfited = discomfited, 1. 1464. It is formed by the 
same analogy as stroyeth = destroyeth. See note to 1. 780. The 
substantive discunifiture, O.Fr. desconfiture, occurs in 1. 336 ; the same 

118 NOTES TO pp. 32 40, 11. 13271383. 

word, without prefix, is found in M.H.G., cf. Kudrun, ed. Martin, 

" do si heten gerne die porten zuo getan 

do muosten si daz lernen durch schumphentiuren verlan." 
The Italian noun is sconfitta, and the verb sconfiggere. 
p. 32, 1. 1327. God aboue does not rhyme with lord almighty. The 
rhyme is easily restored if we read of might (cf. 1. 2059) for aboue, 
and if we change almighty into almighte, so that we have : 
1. 1327. " Tho Charles thanked God of myghte." 
1. 1329. " And saide, ' blessed be thou, lord almyghte.' " 
Tlie adjective almiyt is of frequent occurrence in Mid. Eng. writers. 
So in Allit. Poems, I. 497 : "in sothful gospel of god almy^t ; " Syr 
Ferumbras, 1. 3580, "God almy^te : si^te ; " ibid. 1. 3815, "god 
almy^t : wy^t." 

p. 39, 1. 1349. cas is an erratum for ras. " Ras, shave." " Rees 
1693, evening." These explanations given by the editor of the 
Roxb. Club ed. are wrong. Ras and rees being both derived from 
O.E. rees, " impetus cursus," are indiscriminately used in three mean- 
ings : (1) " onset, assault ; " (2) " course, run, rush, haste, hurry ; " 
(3) " space, time, occasion." The last signification is well shewn 
by the following passages : 

" Hit lastej? but a lutel rees." 

(a. Maydenhod, 1. 26.) 
"pat ys to seye upon a rees, 
Stynkyng Saxone, be on pees." 

(Arthur, ed. Furnivall, 1. 525.) 

In the Sowdan ras or rees means (1) "time, instant, occasion," 11. 

1349, 1693 ; (2) " rush, hurry, haste," 11. 645, 489. rase, 1. 774 = 

" current in the sea," the same word as the preceding ras and rees, 

meaning properly, " a narrow rush, or violent current of water." See 

Morris, Chaucer's Prologue (Clarendon Press), s. v. reyse. Cf. the 

French expressions, u raz de mer," " raz de courent," " raz de maree." 

p. 39, 1. 1361. sene: be. Read se as in 11. 1124, 658, 1826. 

p. 40, 1. 1372. ryden, which does not rhyme with foghten, is evidently 

a clerical error. I suppose soghten to be the true reading. For 

examples of soght = " came, went, moved," see Zupitza's note to 

Guy, 1. 7151, and Skeat's Glossary to Specimens, s. v. socht. There 

is still another corruption in this passage, as assembled does not 

rhyme with ordeyned. 

p. 40, 1. 1380. Note the transition from, the indirect to the direct 

p. 40, 1. 1381. As it stands, the line is too long and spoils the rhythm. 

The words u if ye cast me downe " can be dispensed with, 
p. 40, 1. 1383. thare : were (O.E. werian). The rhyme is easily 
restored by reading there instead of thare, cf. 11. 2604, 2404, 2245, 
etc. and see Introduction, p. xxxv. 

NOTES TO pp. 41 43, 11. 1419 1475. 119 

p. 41, ]]. 1419-22. Observe the weak rhymes alternating with the 
strong ones. 

p. 41, 1. 1420. brother means "brother-in-law." Oliver's sister Aude 
was Roland's intended bride. Perhaps also brother may be taken 
here in sense of " brother in arms," as in most romances we find 
Roland and Oliver mentioned as a couple of true friends united by 
the most tender ties of comradeship. Besides, Oliver was highly 
indebted to Roland, who had rescued him when he had been made a 
prisoner after his duel with Ferragus. 

p. 41, 1. 1423. cowthe miswritten for caughte, which we read in 11. 
1411, 1603. 

p. 41, 1. 1424. Ascopartes is the correct form. See note on 1. 495. 

p. 51, 1. 1427. foolde cannot be " earth " here, for which the editor of 
the Roxburghe Club ed. takes it. Foolde is the participle past of 
fealden, " to fold, plicare." It means, " folded, bent down, fallen." 
This seems also to be the sense offolde in the following passages : 

La^amon, 23983-4 : 

"pa feol Frolle 
folde to grunde.' 5 
Ibid. 11. 27054-6 : 

" Roman isce veollen 
fiftene hundred 
folden to grunden." 
Ibid. 11. 20057-60 : 

" he J>ohte to quellen 
pe king on his >eode 
& his folc valden 
volden to grunde." 
Cf. Slratmann, p. 194. 

p. 41, 1. 1433. Roland and Olyver are taken prisoners. This incident 
is differently related in the other poems. There Roland is not taken 
at all, but sent afterwards among the messengers to the Soudan's 
court. Together with Oliver four knights are taken, viz. Gwylmer, 
Berard, Geoffrey and Aubry, who all are carried away by the flying 
Saracens in spite of the efforts of Roland and Ogier. 
p. 42, 1. 1451. what =" who" See Koch, Eng. Gr. II. 339, and 
Skeat's note to Piers the Plowman (Clarendon Press), 113/19. So in 
11. 1133, 1623. 

p. 42, 1. 1456. astyte has nothing to do with the Latin astutus with 
which the editor of the Roxb. Club ed. apparently confounds it in 
explaining it as "cunningly devised." Astyte means "at once, 
immediately, suddenly"; see Morris, Glossary to Allit. Poems. It 
is a compound of the simple word tyte, " soon, quickly," which see 
above, 1. 181. 

p. 43, 1. 1475. Turpyn. The name of the archbishop is not mentioned 
in the Ashmolean version. The French text, 11. 183640, runs as 
follows : 

120 NOTES TO pp. 43 47, 11. 1483 1619. 

" Karles, nostre empereres, en est en pies Iev6s, 
II apela Milon et Turpin 1'aloses, 
Deus rices arcevesques de moult grant saintete" : 
Faites moi tost uns fons beneir et sacrer ; 
Je woel que cis rois soit bauptizi^s et leve's." 

Cf. also the Pro verbal poem, 1. 1899, et seq. 
p. 43, 1. 1483. nought for thane = " nevertheless," cf. Koch, Eng. Gr. 

II. p. 473. 
p. 43, 1. 1486. Rome is a corruption of Roye, as follows from the French 

Fierabras, 1. 1851 : 

" C'est sains Florans de Roie, ce dist 1'auctorites." 

Cf. the Ashmole Ferumbras, 1. 1087, and Grceber, Zeitschrift fur 

romanische Philologie, IV. p. 167. 
p. 43, 1. 1495. affrayned, which must not be confounded with affray ed, 

as the editor of the Roxburghe Club ed. does, means " asked, inquired." 

It is the compound of freynen or fray nen, O.E. frignan, "to ask." 

Goth, fraihnan. Germ, fragen. 
p. 43, 1. 1497. allayned, " concealed." The simple verb layne (from 

Icel. leyna, cf. Zupitza's note to Guy, 1. 2994) is still retained in the 

Scottish dialect, with the sense of " to hide." Cf. also Morris, Allit. 

Poems, Gloss, s. v. layned. 
p. 43, 1. 1498. In the other poems the prisoners do not tell their true 

names ; see Introduction, pp. xxvii and xxix ; and cf. Syr Ferumbras, 

1. 1167. 
p. 43, 1. 1499. Roland is nephew to Charlemagne on his mother's side. 

See note to 1. 1888, and cf. the Ashmole Ferumbras, 1. 2066. For 

Oliver, see above, note to 1. 1250. 
p. 44, 1. 1515. In the Sowdan Floripas herself advises Laban not to slay 

his captives, but to imprison them. In the other versions it is one of 

the barons who gives the same advice. See Introduction, p. xxviii. 
p. 44, 1. 1538. depe : myrke. The rhyme will be restored by reading 

dirke or derke instead of depe. derke occurs in 1. 2541. 
p. 45, 1. 1604. maute. "In Old French maute is malice." Gloss, to 

Roxburghe Club ed. I do not know whether maute exists in O.Fr., 

but even if it did, it would make no sense here. I feel sure maute 

is a corruption of mynte or mente (cf. 1. 1784), the preterite of minten 

or menten = " to aim a blow, to strike," from O.E. myntan, "to 

intend, to purpose." See Zupitza's note to Guy, 1. 6579, and Morris, 

Allit. Poems, s. v. mynte. Cf. also Syr Ferumbras, 1. 5587 : 
" pan Charlis a strok till hym gan mynte; 
Ac bym faylede of ys dynte, 

for J?at swerd hym glente . . ." 
p. 47, 1. 1615. trew instead of free will restore the rhyme. The same 

rhyme trewe : newe occurs in 11. 67, 588. 
p. 47, 1. 1619. fele sithe, "many a time, often." So in 11. 2740, 2815. 

Cf. ofle sithe, 1. 916. 

NOTES TO pp. 4749, 11. 1624 1698. 121 

p. 47, 1. 1624. ruly, O.E. hreowlic = " rueful, sorrowful, mournful, 


p. 47, 1. 1645. harme skathe makes no sense. Read harme & slcathe, 
which occurs in Gen. and Exod. 1. 2314 : 

" $is sonde hem overtake^ rafce 
And bicalle<5 of harme and scaiSe." 

p. 48, 1. 1665. In the French Fierabras (as well as in the Ashmolean 
version) it is Roland whom Charlemagne addresses first (see above, 
note to 1. 1433) ; he tells him that he must go on a mission to 
demand the surrender of Oliver and his companions. Upon which 
Naymes and the other twelve peers remonstrate, but are all sent to 
Laban one after the other, just as in the Sowdan. In the Proven9al 
poem it is only Guy who protests. Cf. 11. 2263-2282 of the French 
Fierabras : 

"Rollant regarda tost, si 1'a araisonnS : 
Biaus nes, ce dist li rois, trop sui por vous ires ; 
Vous movres le matin, a Aigremore ires ; 
Si d ire's 1'amirant, gardes ne li celes, 
Rende moi la courone dont Dix fu courones 
Et les autres reliques dont je sui moult pen6s; 
Et en apres demant mes chevalier menbre's ; 
Et se il ne le fait si que deviseres, 
Dites jel ferai pendre par la goule & un trefs, 
En destre le nienrai com .i. larron prov6, 
Ne troverai putel ou il ne soit pass6." etc. 
p. 48, 1. 1668. Cf. Fierabras, 11. 2309-2321, and Syr Ferumbras, 1. 1486- 

p. 49, 1. 1683. lese, " lose." So in 1. 2655 and 1696, where it rhymes 

with cliese, which occurs again in 11. 2748, 2934. 
p. 49, 1. 1687. French text gives (11. 2297, et seq.) : 

" Ogiers li boins Danois s'en est Iev6s en pie's : 
Sire drois emperere, pour amour Dieu. oies : 
Bien sai se il i vont ja n'en revenra pies. 
Avoec ires, dist Karles, par les ex de mon cief : 
Or i seres vous .v. qui porteres mes bries." 

p. 49, 1. 1691. Bery must be rniswritten for Ten*y, as we find Tern's 
d'Ardane in the French Fierabras, 1. 2290, and Terry of Ardane in 
Syr Ferumbras, 1. 1469. According to 1. 3187 of Sir Ferumbras, 
Thierry is the father of Berard (Bryer) of Mountdidier. Cf. the 
French text, 11. 2290-96 and Syr Ferumbras, 11. 1468-1473. 
p. 49, 1. 1693. rees, "time, occasion." See note to 1. 1349. 
p. 49, 1. 1695. Folk Baliant is not mentioned in any other poem of 

our romance. See Introduction, p. xxvii. 

p. 49, 1. 1698. chese, O.E. ceosan, Mod. E. choose. It here means " to 
be free to choose" : "You shall not be free to choose," "you shall 
have no choice," "you shall do what you are ordered." See 
Matzner's remark [in his Worterb., p. 562, s. v. cheosen\ to Halliwell, 
Diet. p. 250. 

122 NOTES TO pp. 49, 60, 11. 1699 1723. 

p. 49, 1. 1699. Aleroyse. See note to 1. 884. 

p. 49, 1. 1711. Turpyn. There was a real bishop of this name, who, 
according to the Gallia Christiana, held the see of Reims from A.D. 
753 to 794. As we find him described in the romances, Turpin was 
the very type of a knight-bishop. In the poem of Aspremont, he 
bears before the Christian army the wood of the true cross which in 
his hands beams with brightness like the sun. In the romance of 
the Enfances Ogier it was he, into whose custody Ogier was given, 
when he had been made a prisoner after his revolt, in company with 
the king of Lombardy, against Charlemagne (see above, note to 
1. 856), and who, notwithstanding the order of Charles to have Ogier 
starved to death, kept the Dane alive, who afterwards, when the 
Saracens invaded France, proved a great help to the Christian arms. 
As we read in the Chanson de Roland, 11. 2242ss, Turpin met his 
death at Roncesvaux, but according to the Chronicle of Turpin, he 
survived the disaster of Roncesvaux, and was saying mass for the 
dead, when he saw the angels carrying the soul of Roland up to 
heaven. But from Gaston Paris's Essay De Pseudo-Turpino we know 
this chronicle to be an apocryphical book written by two monks of the 
eleventh and twelfth century. 

p. 49, 1. 1717. set not of youre barons so light = " do not count, 
consider them so little." Cf. " to take one so lighte," in Syr 
Ferumbras, 11. 114, 156. 

p. 50, 1. 1721. gyfe no coost has the same meaning as give no tale = 
" make no account, do not mind." See Zupitza's note to GUI/, 8143. 
Cf. also Sowdan, 1. 2793, and Syr Ferumbras, 1. 5847, 101, 4975 ; and 
also 11. 173, 1578. 

p. 50, 1. 1723. Bryer of Mounte^ or Berard de Montdidier was 
celebrated for his gallantries and attentions to the ladies : 
" D'ardimen vail Rotlan et Olivier 
E de domnei Berart de Mondesdier." 

*. e. " In prowess I am equal to Rolland and to Oliver, in matters 
of love to Berart of M." says the troubadour Peire Vidal in his poem 
Dragoman seiner ; cf. also Fierabras, 11. 2125-7 : 

" Je ne sai cui vous estes, car ne vous puis viser, 

Mais je cuit c'as pucieles sives moult bien juer, 

En cambre sous cortine baisier et acoler." 

See, besides, Syr Ferumbras, 11. 422, 1297, 1305, 1354. This Bryer 
of Mountes must be the same as the one slain in a sally of the 
twelve peers, 11. 2604, 2622, because, according to 1. 1723, it was he 
who was among the peers sent on a mission to the Soudan. There is 
one Bryer of Brytaine occurring in 1. 886, whom one might be 
inclined to think identical with Bryer of Mountes, as in 1. 886 he is 
cited together with the other peers. But since we find him again as 
the treasurer of Charlemagne (1. 3205), this is impossible, unless we 
euppose the mention of Bryer in 1. 3205 to be owing to the absent- 

NOTES TO pp. 50 55, 11. 1743 1892. 123 

mindedness of the author, who may be accused of a similar inad- 
vertency with regard to Rychard of Normandy ; cf. note to 1. 2797, 
and Index of Names, s. v. Flagot. 

p. 50, 1. 1743. Bronland. The true reading is Brouland, as shewn by 
Fierabras, 11. 1549, 5174, &c. ; Destruction, 11. 1240-159, 441, and 
Sowdan, 11. 1759, 2456. The Ashmole MS. has Bruyllant. 

p. 51, 1. 1751. thane = "thane that." See Zupitza's note to Guy, 992, 
p. 363. 

p. 51, 1. 1778. charlce hardly makes sense here. It is perhaps a 
clerical error for charge, " to command, to order." The sense would 
then be, " and to tell him the Soudan's strict orders which by peril of 
death ( upon life and Lithe) Labari recommended him to obey." 

p. 51, 1. 1779. pen instead of pan would improve the rhyme. 

p. 52, 1. 1788. lorde of Spay ne. Cf. the French expression, " arnirans 
d'Espaigne," which we find so often used in the Destruction. 

p. 52, 1. 1802. trappe is Mod. Eng. trape, which is used in the sense of 
" to traipse, to walk sluttishly." Halliwell has "trapes = to wander 

p. 52, 1. 1816. lyleved. Rhyme and sense will be improved by reading 

p. 53, 1. 1854. tyme makes no sense here. Perhaps we ought to read 
I dyne; cf. 11. 1508, 1114, 1837, and Syr Ferumbras, 1. 5621 : 
" Oj^er elles }?oo shalt f?yn hefd forgon, 

To morvven, or y wil dyne." 
Fierabras, 1. 1914 : 

" Ja mais ne mengerai si sera aesmembres.' 
See also Guy, 1. 3695. 

p. 54, 1. 1888. Syr Gy, nevew unto the king Charles. Cf. Fierabras, 11. 
3406-8 : 

" On m'apele Guion, de Borgoigne f ui nes, 
Et fils d'une des filles au due Millon d'Aingler. 
Cousin germaiu Eollant, qui tant fait & douter." 

Duke Milon d'Anglers was brother-in-law to Charlemagne, whose 
sister Berte was Milon's wife and mother to Roland. Cf. Philippe 
Mousket, 1. 2706-8 : 

" S'ot Charles une autre sereur, 
Bertain : cele prist & seigneur 
Milon d'Anglers, s'en ot Eollant." 

If, therefore, in the passage quoted above from Fierabras, Guy is said 
to be the grandson of Milon, he must have been the grand-nephew 
of Charlemagne, and nephew to Rollant. As we learn from the 
French poem of Guy de Bourgoyne, Guy's father was Safnson of 
Burgundy. Cf. besides, Histoire Poetique, p. 407, and Syr Femmbras, 
11. 1922, 2091, 1410, etc. 

p. 55, 1. 1892. And yet knowe I him noght. Floripas has already once 

124 NOTES TO pp. 65 59, 11. 1927 2036 

seen Guy when he was defeating Lukafer before Rome ; cf. Fierabras, 
11. 2237-2245 : 

".i. chevalier de France ai lontans ename 
Guis a nom de Borgoigne. moult i a bel arme ; 
Parens est Karlemaine et Rollant I'adure'. 
Des que je fui a Rom me, m'a tout moa cuer enable" 
Quant 1'amirans mes peres fist gaster la cite", 
Lucafer de Baudas abati ens ou pre, 
Et lui et le ceval, d'un fort espiel quarre. 
Se cis n'est mes maris, je n'arai homnie ne ; 
Pour lui voel je croire ou roi de sainte maiste." 

See also Syr Ferumbras, 11. 2073-2087. Our line does not necessarily 
imply a contradiction to the French text, as on the former occasion 
she probably saw the duel from a great distance, when the latter's 
features were hidden by his helmet. That she really did not 
recognize him follows from the following passage of Fierabras, 1. 
2800, et seq. 

" Je aim en douce France .1. leger baceler." 
" Dame, comment a nom ? " ce dist Ilollans li her 
Et respont la puciele : " ja le m'orre's nomrner ; 
Guis a nom de Borgoigne, moult i a bel arme." 
" Par moil cief" dist Rollans "a vos ex le vees 
N'a pas entre vous deus iiii pies mesures." 

Besides there are numerous instances to be met with in mediaeval 
poetry of persons enamoured of some one they had never seen : 

" Ans no la vi et am la fort " 

gays Guilhelin de Poitiers in speaking of his lady (Mahn, WerJce der 
Troubadours, p. 3). Cf. also Hits. Rom. II. 19, and Web. Rom. 
II. 131. 
p. 55, 1. 1927. myghty seems to mean "excellent, delicious," rather 

than " heavy." 

p. 57,1. 1974. amonge, "every now and then, from time to time, 
occasionally." See Zupitza's note to Guy, 2301. It is often used as 
a kind of expletive, 
p. 57, 1. 1995. foulis, " fools, foolish." Cf. the French text : 

" Par Mahoun, dist li rois, trestout sontfol prove." 

p. 57, 1. 1996. There is no mention made of this game in the Pro- 
venal poem. It is described here even more explicitly than in the 
French Fierabras, 11. 2907 2932. Cf. also Syr Ferumbras, 11. 2230 

p. 57, 1. 1997. assorts = " assembly, company ; " by one assorte = 
"in one company" (Halliwcll). It seems to be connected with sort 
= "set, assemblage," see Skeat, Specimens of E. E., 425/999 
p. 58, 1. 2000. i-fest : blast. Perhaps we ought to read i-fast. 
p. 59, 1. 2036. maden orders. I do not know the exact meaning of this 
expression. Perhaps it may be taken with the same sense as the 
Mod. H. Germ, phrase = " ordnung schafTen," which literally means 

NOTES TO pp. 59 64, 11. 2045 2238. 125 

;< to set in order, to put matters straight," but is often used in the 
sense of " to clear away," or, " to remove or despatch." 

p. 59, 1. 2045. that lie wente awaye with lym = " that he had escaped 
with (his limbs, or having) his limbs safe and sound, lyme, O.E. 
Urn., Mod. Eng. limb. 

p. 59, 1. 2052. tho = O.E. J}a, " those, them," it is used as a definite 
article in 1. 2063. 

p. 59, 1. 2057. amapide, miswritten for awapide (Heritage), " astounded, 
bewildered." Cf. Stratmann, p. 10. Matzner, Worterbuch, p. 150, 
connects it with Goth, afhvapjan, " to suffocate." We find m written 
for w several times in our poem ; thus we read gamylokes for ga\vy- 
lokes in 1. 2650, and romme for row/we in 1. 876. 

p. 60, 1. 2085. Assyne. The rhyme shows that Assye is the true 
reading. Assye occurs in 11. 102, 123. 

p. 60, 1. 2093. wone, "heap, plenty.". O.Icel. wan. See Zupitza's note 
to Guy, p. 444. 

p. 61, 1. 2119. Brenlande. It ought to be Breuland or Brouland ; see 
above note to 1. 1743. 

p. 61, 1. 2120. The first foot in the line consists of the single word 
what. Thus in 11. 2288, 2374, 2394, etc. 

p. 62, 1. 2145. Espyarde. This name only occurs in this poern. In 
Syr Ferumbras, 1. 3824, the messenger sent to the bridge-keeper is 
called Malyngryas, There is no name mentioned in the French 
Fierabras, 1. 4265. 

p. 62, 1. 2156. That no man by the brigge. There is no verb in the 
sentence. Perhaps we ought to read that no man passe by the brigge, 
or, that no man passe the brigge. 

p. 63, 1. 2191. Cf. the description of the giant in Fierabras, 11. 4740- 
4755, and Syr Ferumbras, 11. 4435 4441. 

p. 63, 1. 2199. nolch not. See note to 1. 1096. 

p. 64, 1. 2225. The line is too long. Wilde can be dispensed with, 
and instead of horses we may read hors ; cf. Skeat, Gloss, to Prioress's 
Tale (Clarendon Press), s. v. hors. 

p. 64, 1. 2233. a magnelle, "a mangonel," an ancient military engine 
used for battering down walls (Halliwell). Magnelle is the O.Fr. 
Mangonel, or Mangoneau, the Italian manganello (= " arbalist, cross- 
bow "). The latter is the diminutive form of mangano, " a sling ; " 
Greek, payyarov. See Diez, Etym,. Wdrterb., I. 261. 

p. 64, 1. 2238. Cornel or camel, Fr. camel, Mod.Fr. creneau, " battle- 
ment, pinnacle." Literally it means, " a piece carved out," i. e. ot 
the wall on the top of a building ; the French verb carneler or 
crcneler signifying, " to carve out, to jag, to notch." Camel is 
derived from Latin crena (See Diez, Gramm., I. 14), which means "a 
notch, a cut, an incision " (Diez, Etym. Wdrterb., II. 266). Thus 
camel came to denote a battlement or indented parapet ; or more 

126 NOTES TO pp. 65 68, 11. 2245 2351. 

exactly it was applied to those parts of the wall projecting upwards 
between the openings or embrasures. It was one of these projecting 
portions that was here knocked down. Cf. also Syr Ferumbras, 1. 

p. 65, 1. 2245. The line is too long. Perhaps or he hit may be dis- 
pensed with. 

p. 65, 1. 2247. The episode of Marsedag being slain by Guy is not 
found in any other poem of this romance. 

p. 65, 1. 2271. Alkaron, "the Koran," al is the Arabic article. There 
is a god named Alcaron occurring in 1. 2762. 

p. 66, 1. 2282. dye: waye. See 1.441. forfamelid = " famished, 
starved to death." I am not aware of any other instance of this 
word. Halliwell has " famele = to be famished." The prefix for- 
has intensive or augmentative power ; it is particularly used in past 
participles. See Matzner's Grammatik, I 2 . 542. 

p. 66, 1. 2290. faile is the infinitive mood = " to be wanting, to 
become deficient." " Roland seeing the ladies white and pale (with 
hunger) and (seeing) the bread wanting on their table spoke some 
words of lamentation," etc. 

p. 66, 1. 2303. forcere, " chest, coffer." For the etymology see 
Diez, Worterb., II. 31, 8. v. forziere. 

p. 66, 1. 2309. As it stands the line is too long. As you and that may 
be dispensed with, we ought perhaps to read, / pray ye wole us alle 
it shewe. 

p. 66, 1. 2310. saule, " fill, hunger satisfied to repletion." The rhyme 
shows that the last syllable is accentuated. Therefore it cannot be 
derived from the French soul (Gloss, to Roxb. Club ed.), but from 

p. 66, 1. 2311. yede = "went." Not from O.E. eode, but from ge- 
eode. See Zupitza's note to Guy, 1. 60, and Skeat, Piers the Plowman 
(Clarendon Press), 94/40. 

p. 66, 1. 2312. vertue : fewe ; the rhyme is perfect, see the Abstract of 
Mr. Nicol's paper in the Academy of June 23, 1877 (vol. xi. p. 564, 
col. 1). 

p. 66, 1. 2313. We must scan this line thus : 

And diden it aboute hem everychon. 

^"^^^^ ^ ^ 

-en in diden is mute ; see Introduction, p. xxxix. 
p. 67, 1. 2326. ginne = " engin, contrivance, trick." See note to 1. 

p. 67, 1. 2337. lefte. The rhyme shows that the author pronounced 

lafte, which we find in 1. 426. 
p 68, 1. 2351. Cf. Fierabras, 11. 30463097. In the Prove^al poem 

Maubyn or Malpi, as he is called in Proven9al, enters the room by 

means of a charm which makes the door open itself: 

NOTES TO pp. 68 73, 11. 2365 2538. 127 

*' Vengutz es al fossat, pres de la tor cayrada. 
Tantost intret dedins cuendamens a celada, 
Venc a 1'us de la cambra : si la trobet tancada. 
Eta dit son conjur : tota s'es desfermada." 

11. 2757-00. 

p. 68, 1. 2365. The rhyme is restored if we read ledde instead of ladde. 
See 1. 1651. 

p. 69, 1. 2390. By God and seynte Mary, myn avour. I think the 
words myn avoure are due to the scribe, not to the author, as they 
spoil the rhythm. So we get Mary : we. This rhyme, although 
not perfect, is of no rare occurrence in Mid. Eng. works, see Introduc- 
tion, p. xliv. As to the spelling of avour I am not aware of any 
other instance of this form of the. word. There is a form avyowre 
cited by Halliwell. Besides, avoury and avowery, which he quotes 
under different heads, are perhaps only different spellings of the same 

p. 69, 1. 2399. slepinge must be altered into slepande in order to restore 
the rhyme. The author employed -and and -ynge as terminations of 
the present participle. See Introduction, p. xxxviii. 

p. 69, 1. 2421. also belongs to 1. 2422. 

p. 70, 1. 2433. so mete I spede, " as I may succeed." See Zupitza's 
note to Guy, \. 615. 

p. 71, 1. 2477. and now is perhaps miswritten for inow ; cf. the French 
text, 1. 3803 : 

'' Tant y a plates d'or, nus nes porroit nombrer." 

p. 71, 1. 2482. wast gives no sense. Perhaps we ought to read 

p. 72, 11. 2491 2502. The arrangement of the stanzas seems, as 
regards the rhymes, to be incorrect. 

p. 72, 1. 2507. In the Ashmole Ferumbras this episode of the Soudan 
breaking the image of Mahound is omitted. In the French text he 
only threatens to make him cry, as soon as he gets hold of him, but 
he is rebuked by Sorbrance telling him that Mahomet being over- 
tired with guarding the treasure has only fallen asleep. Cf. Fierabras, 
11. 38203829. 

p. 72, 1. 2512. ore, O.E. ar, " mercy, favour." Thyn ore = " grant 
us thy favour," "have mercy upon us," or, "with thy favour." 

p. 73, 1. 2535. Richard of Normandy appearing here as in the French 
Fierabras, among the twelve peers besieged by the Soudan, without 
having been mentioned before in the number of the knights sent on 
a mission by Charles, furnishes us with an argument in support of our 
supposition that the French Fierabras was the source of our poem. 
See Introduction, p. xxx, and of Fierabras, 11. 3957 3994, and Syr 
Ferumbras, 1. 4921. 

p. 73, 1. 2538. wynde : hende ; wende which occurs in 1. 2328 would 
improve the rhyme. 

128 NOTES TO pp. 73 77, 11. 2549 2698. 

p. 73, 1. 2549. paramour = " object of chivalrous affection and 

p. 73, 1. 2557. wronye, preterite of luringe, " to press well out, force 
one's way." 

p. 73, 1. 2558. Does thile stand for while, as then, 1. 2527, seems to be 

miswritten for when ? Or is thile = the while ? 
p. 74, 1. 2564. sloughe : droive. Bead slowe, as in 11. 2401, 2683, 304, 

2208, etc. 

p. 75, 1. 2597. itolde, " in number," see Zupitza's note to Guy, 1770. 

p. 75, 1. 2614. quell = " kill," which occurs in 1. 3006. 

p. 75, 1. 2616. bistadde, " hard bestead, greatly imperilled." 

p. 75, 1. 2617. japed, " mocked, tricked, laughed at." Connected with 

Icel. gabba, " to mock." 

p. 76, 1. 2639. ilia. See Introduction, p. xxxvii. 

p. 76, 1. 2651. lurdeyn, Mod. Eng. lurdan, which is said to be the Fr. 
lourdin (diminutive of lourd). Regarding it as a corruption of " lord 
Dane " is a mere joke : 

" In every house lord Dane did then rule all, 
Whence laysie lozels lurdanes now we call." 

Mirrour for Magistrates, p. 588. 

p. 76, 1. 2654. sewes. See Skeat, Prioress's Tale, p. 286. 
p. 76, 1. 2660. let armes makes no sense. Read as armes As armes 
= Fr. aux armes, " to arms," is of pretty frequent occurrence in 
Mid. Eng. poems; see Matzner's Worterb., p. 112. Cf. also Syr 
Ferumbras, 1. 2933 : 

<; As armes," Jjanne cride Rolond, 

" As armes everychone ! " 
Cf. ibidem, 1. 4125. So we read in the Destruction, 1. 1460 . 

<; Ore as armes, seignours, franc chevalier membre." 

Perhaps we ought to read as armes also in 1. 491, where the reading 
and armes is somewhat suspicious, since armes, if we regard and 
armes to be the true reading, would be the only instance of the 
imperative plural ending in -es (instead of -eth) in the Sowdan. 
p. 77 1. 2689. Thay thanked God that thay him hadde Gyfe thaye 
suche grace to spede. These lines are corrupt. I propose to read : 
" Thay thanked God that hem hadde 
Gyfen suche grace to spede." 

p. 77, 1. 2694. alaye, written as one word in the MS., must be divided 
into two, a being the indefinite article, and laye meaning lt un- 
ploughed ground, field, pasture, meadow." Mod. Eng. ley, lea, lay 
See Stratmann, s. v. ley, p. 356. 

p. 77, 1. 2698. he, " they." This is the only instance of he instead of 
the common thay. But he, which is further confirmed by the rhyme, 
must certainly be attributed to the author; thay occurs only once 

NOTES TO pp. 78 81, 11. 2706 2810. 129 

(1. 3021) as a rhyme, but the rhyme is not a good one, and there also 
it would be preferable to read he. 

p. 78, 1. 2706. by my thrifte, the same as " so mote y thryve," or, " so 
mote y spede " = u as (verily as) I may thrive," " hi truth." 

p. 78, 1. 2707. see ; cf. Zupitza's note to Guy, 163. 

p. 78, 1. 2719. wole : skille. The rhyme shows that wole cannot be 
due to the author ; we must read wille (or welle which occurs 1. 2633). 

p. 78, 1. 2732. bikure or bykeringe, 1. 2559 = " fight, battle, skirmish. 1 ' 
Er durste bikure abide. The subject is wanting, see note to 1. 67. Or 
is there any corruption in this line ? Perhaps we ought to read : 
"Lenger durste [thay] no bikure abyde." Cf. 11. 3117, 2610, 2947. 

p. 79, 1. 2748. love. The rhyme requires kef or leeve. leef, O.E. leof, 
means "dear, beloved." For examples of leef being used as a sub- 
stantive, see Stratmann, p. 359. 

p. 80, 1. 2793. eye, " egg." See Koch, Eng. Gr. II. 582, and compare 
the French phrase " valoir un cetif pele." 

p. 80, 1. 2797. and his meyne. This must be a mistake of the author 
himself. According to 1. 2557, Richard had ventured alone on a 
mission to Charlemagne. There is no mention whatever made 
afterwards that he was joined by any one ; the other poems likewise 
state that Richard was without any companion. 

p. 80, 1. 2805. lete : gate. The rhyme requires late. 

p. 81, 1. 2810. cliffe. Here the author of the Sowdan goes so far in 
shortening his original as to be wholly unintelligible. Indeed, any 
reader, not comparing these lines with corresponding passages in the 
French poem, will be left without any clue to what cliff is here 
intended to mean. From the French Fierabras we know that the 
water of the river was very deep and broad, and that the banks were 
exceedingly steep and almost inaccessible. Cf. Fierabras, 11. 4349 : 

" Et voit 1'augue bruiant, le flot parfont et le." 

1. 4358 : u La rive en est moult haute, bien fait a redouter." Cf. also 
the Proven9al poem, 11. 3733, et seq. : 

" Richart regarda Taygua. que fe mot a duptar, 
E fo grans e preonda, que no y auza intrar, 
E la riba fou auta de C pes ses gaber." 

Now it was by means of a twofold myracle tha't the Christian knight 
was enabled to cross the river : 

(1) The waters suddenly increased and rose so as to reach the very 
top of the banks ; cf. Fierabras, 11. 4365-69 : 

" Or oies quel vertu Diex i vaut demonstrer 
Por le roi Karlemaine, qui tant fait a douter. 
Anyois que on eust une liuee ale, 
Veissies si Flagot engroissier et enfler, 
Que par desous la rive commence wonder.* 
Provensal, 11. 3741-45: 


130 NOTES TO p. 81, 11. 2811 2820. 

" Ara podetz auzir, si m voletz escoutar : 
Tan bela meravilha li vole dieus demostrar 
Per lo bon rey de Fransa que el vole tant amar ; 
Ans un trag de balesta pogues lunhs horn anar, 
Pogratz vezer Flagot sus la riba nwntar" 

(2) A deer appears and shows Richard the way across the river to 
the top of the opposite bank. 

" A tant es vous .i. cerf, que Diex i fist aler, 
Et fu blans comme nois, biaus fu A, resgarder. 
Devant le her Biehart se prent & dernostrer, 
Devant lui est tantost ens en Flagot entres. 
Li dus voit Sarrazins apres lui aroutes, 
S'il ot paour de mort ne fait & demander. 
Apres le blance bisse commencha & errer 
Tout ainsi com ele vait, lait le ceval aler ; 
Et li ciers vait devant, qui bien s' i sot garder, 
D'autre part & la rive se prent a ariver." 
Cf. also the Proven9al version, 11. 3751-54 : 

" Apres la blanca bestia laycha '1 destrier anar. 
E lo cer vay denan, que 1 saup mot ben guizar, 
De 1'autra part de 1'aygua 1'a fayt ben aribar, 
E die HS a fayt Flagot en son estat tornar? ' 

This bank which formerly was steep and inaccessible, but is now 
covered with water, is called cliff \>y our poet. In the Ashniolean poem 
the first miracle is not mentioned ; cf. Syr Ferumbras, 11. 31)43, et seq. 
p. 81, 1. 2811. he blessed him in Godis name. The phrase occurs also 
in Syr Ferumbras, 1. 3961, but is not to be found in the French text. 
Mr. John Shelley (in his paper printed in the Annual Report and 
Transactions of the Plymouth -Institution, IV. i. 71) took this phrase 
as a proof that the original of the Sowdan could not have been the 
French poem. But it must be stated that as in the Sowdan, 1. 
2807, so in the French version Richard is said to have addressed a 
prayer to God : 

" Escortrement commence Jhesu a reclamer : 
Glorieus sire pere, qui te laissas pener 
En la crois beneoite pour ton pule sauver, 
Garisies hui mon cors de mort et d'afoler, 
Que je puisse Karlon mon message conter." 

Fierdbraa, 11. 4360-f>4. 

If now we consider that some lines back (1. 4093) the French poem 
expressively states that Richard seeing himself hard pressed by the 
Saracens, signed himself with the sign of the cross 
" Lors a leve* sa main, de Jhesu s'est siguies " 

an incident which at that moment is omitted in the Sowdan we 
think ourselves entitled to regard this proof as not very convincing, 
p. 81, 1. 2820. Ganelon, one of Charlemagne's officers, who by his 
treachery was the cause of the defeat of Roncesvaux, the death of 
Roland, etc., for which he was torn to death by horses. For 

NOTES TO pp. 81 88, 11. 2845 3084. 131 

several centuries his name was a synonymous word with traitor. 

Gando = Germ. Wenhilo. 
p. 81, 1. 2845. Fremoundfi cannot be the true reading, as it does not 

rhyme with Idnge. Besides Fremounde does not occur again in the 

poem. Perhaps we ouglit to read Qwyntyne, as in 1. 1298. In the 

corresponding passage of the French Fierabras (1. 4625) it is to St. 

Denis that Charles swears ; cf. also Syr Ferurnbras, 1. 4289. 
p. 82, 1. 2850. And makes no sense. Read " God" 
p. 83, 1. 2887. f/ryse : assaye. We get a perfect rhyme if we read 

gray instead of gryse. Hull i well, s. v. "gray," has: "the skin or 

fur of a badger." 
p. 83, 1. 2891. As it stands, the line does not rhyme with 1. 2893. The 

rhyme will bo restored if we read : 

" Lycence gete ye noone nere" or perhaps 
" Lycence gcte ye of me nere," 

nere meaning ne'er, never, as in Guy, 10550 and 10716. 
p. 84, 1. 2939. The name of the giantess is Amiette or Amiote in the 

other poems. 

p. 84, 1. 2941. This line is too long ; as Ipilclce may be omitted. 
p. 84, 1. 2942. bydene, " immediately, all at once." On the etymology 

see Zupitza's note to Guy, 2408. 
p. 85, 1. 2981. ayene means " back." So in Genesis and Exodus, 1. 

1097 : "And bodem hem and tagten wel 

<5at here non wente agen." 

Again, 1. 3267 : $ quo $en he 'wende agen, 
An israel folc lete we ben.' " 

p. 86, 1. 3020. As it stands, this line does not scan well. Perhaps we 
may read month instead of monthes, and childre instead of children, 
and scan the line thus : 

Found two childre of seven month oolde. 

p. 87, 1. 3021. tliay : Normandy. The rhyme, though imperfect, can- 
not be objected to ; but as the rhyme e : y (i) is frequently employed 
by our author (see Introduction, p. xliv), and was of rather common use 
about that period (see Ellis, Pronunciation, I. 271), we might incline 
to the supposition that he is the true reading. Cf. besides 1. 2698. 

p. 87, 1. 3034. mene makes no sense. Perhaps we ought to read : 
mete, " food." 

p. 87, 1. 3044. In the French poem, 1. 5108, Hoel and Riol are 
appointed governors of Mantrible, whereas Richard goes on with 
Charles and commands one of the divisions of his army (1. 5577). 
Cf. Syr Ferumbras, 1. 5643. 

p. 88, 1. 3062. coost, " country, region." See Matzner's Worterb., 487. 

p. 88, 1. 3084. In the Fierabras, 1. 5374, it is Naymes who first 
recognizes the banner of France ; cf. Syr Ferumbras, 1. 5209. 

K 2 

132 NOTES TO pp. 89 95, 11. 3098 3274. 

p. 89, 1. 3098. of the EtUopes = " some of the Ethiopians." This 
may be regarded as an example of the partitive use of of. Cf. 
Znpitza's note to Guy, 1961. 

p. 89, 1. 3103. alto hewe must be more correctly written al to-hewe ; 
to-, as a mere prefix (signifying " in twain, asunder, apart " = Germ. 
zer) belongs essentially to the verb ; the intensive adverb al ( = 
" utterly, omnino,") used before verbs beginning not only with to-, 
but also before other prefixes, still further strengthens, and belongs 
to, the whole expression. So al to-treden, 1. 1382, to-braste, 1. 11G8. 

p. 89, 1. 3122. Belmore. Perhaps identical with Belmarine. 

p. 90, 1. 3130. wode-wroth, " madly angry." Cf. Skeat, Specimens of 
Early Eng. Lit., 80/37. 

p. 90, 1. 3141. game, " sport, joke, affair." 

p. 90, 1. 3154. hat, " be called." See note, 1. 613. 

p. 91, 1. 3164. bronde, " sword." In the next line bronte means " blow, 

p. 91, 1. 3189. lande: commaunde. See note, 1. 59. 

p. 91, 1. 3191. The rhyme is spoiled. Perhaps than must be transposed 
so that we get the rhyme baptysed : imaryed. 

p. 92, 1. 3210. there to abide in store = " to be kept in store " ; cf. 
Skelton, ed. Dyce, I. 162, .221. 

p. 92, 1. 3227. victory = " booty, spoils of victory, trophy." 

p. 92, 3. 3232. the hyer honde to have = " to have conquered or 
vanquished." The same phrase is found in M. H. G. ; cf. Hartrnann's 
Iwein, ed. Lachmann, 1. 1537-8 : 

" Vrou Minne nam die obern hant, 
daz si in vienc unde bant." 

p 93, 1. 3236. In the French Fierabras, 1. 6082, et seq., and in the 
Proven9al poem, 1. 5067, et seq., the relics are distributed as follows : 
Part of the crown and one nail to St. Denis, and " li signcs," the 
winding-sheet of the Lord, to Compiegne. There is no mention 
made of the cross in the French poem (see note to 1. 665) ; cf. Introd. 
pp. 1 and liv. 

p. 93, 1. 3253. According to the Chanson de Roland, Ganelon has 
been drawn and quartered in a field near Aix-la-Chapelle. 

p. 94, 1. 3254. By lawe, cf. Syr Ferumbras, 1. 307 : " As for tray tours 
^af J?e lawe.' 1 On this law compare Leon Gander's note to 1. 3736 of 
the Chanson de Roland. 

p. 95, 1. 3274. The French poem ends with the assertion of the poet 
(or the scribe) that whoever has well listened to this romance will 
find every part of it good and excellent, the opening, the middle, and 
the end : 

" De cest roumant est boine et la fin et 1'entree, 
Et enmi et partout, qui bien Pa escoute*e." 



O.E. = Old English or Anglo Saxon. O.Fr. = Old French. 
32/1094 = page 32, line 1094. 

ABYE, 32/1094, vb. to pay for, ex- 
piate. O.E. abycgan. 
adaunte, 28/957, vb. to subdue. 

Fr. danter, donter, dompter. 
aferde, 39/1337, pp. afraid. O.E. 

affrayned, 43/1495, pt. 8. asked. 

O.E. frignan. 
afraye, 26/896, sb. disturbance, 

agreved, 29/992, pp. aggrieved. 

Fr. aggrever. 
alayned, 43/1497, pt. s. concealed, 

dissembled. Icel. leyna. 
alle and some, 22/749, altogether, 

every one. 

almiht, 38/1329, adj. See note. 
ameved, 29/994, pp. moved, 
ampnge, 57/1994, adv. in the mean 

time, now and then, sometimes. 

See note to I. 1974. 
aplight, 17/573, adv. certainly, in- 
deed. See note. 
areeste, 34/1166, sb. rest, support. 

O.Fr. arrest, 
arson, 41/1410, sb. pommel. Fr. 

aspied, 10/314, pp. espied. Fr. 

assaye, 83/2889, sb. value. Fr. 

assorte, 57/1997, sb. assembly, 

company. See note. 
assoyled, 70/2455, pt. pi. absolved. 

astraye, 16/532, adv. out of the 
right way, roving about without 

astyte, 42/1456, adv. immediately. 

asure, 5/134, sb. azure. 

atame, 27/935, vb. to tame, sub- 
due. O.E. atamian. 

atone, 32/1103, agree. 

attones, 31/1067, at once. 

avente, 36/1237, vb. to take breath. 
Fr. venter. 

avoure, 69/2390, sb. protection, 

avyse, 49/1716, vb. to consider, ad- 
vise with one's self. Fr. aviser. 

awapide, 59/2057, pp. astounded, 
bewildered. See note. 

ayene, 85/2981, adv. back. 

Bandon, 19/636, sb. disposal, 
bassatours (?), 29/995, sb. vavas- 


bawson, 2/52, sb. badger, 
baye, 27/940, sb. recess, niche. 

See note. 
beckyn, 3/64, vb. beckon. O.E. 

bedight, 88/3070, vb. to dispose, to 

surrender, to send forth, 
behight, 25/859, pt. s. promised. 

O.E. hehfc. 

bende, 13/420, vb. to direct, 
bente, 20/665, adj. bent, crooked. 



benysone, 9/289, sb. blessing. Fr. 


bette, 49/1716, adv. better. 
bikure, 78/2732, si. skirmish, 
bispake, 5/165, pt. s. spoke with, 
bistadde, 75/2616, pp. placed in 

peril, hardly bestead. Of. O.E. 

stee$<5an. Dan. bestede. 
biwry, 46/1580, vb. betray. O.E. 


bloo, 29/1005, adj. blue. IceL blar. 
blynne, 70/2442, vb. to cease, stop. 

O.E. belinnan. 

bobaunce, 7/211, sb. boasting, 
boure, 54/1870, sb. a lady's apart- 
ment, boudoir. O.E. bur. 
bowe, 53/1853, sb. bough, branch. 

O.E. bog. 
braide, 32/1098, pt. s. drew. O.E. 

brayde, 8/247, sb. craft, deceit, 

artifice. See note. 
breddes, 5/131, sb. birds. O.E. 


broke, 57/1965, vb. to break, 
bronte, 91/3166, sb. blow, 
buskede, 31/1055, pt. s. prepared, 

arrayed. Icel. buask. 
by, 3/87, vb. buy, pay. O.E. byc- 

bydene, 84/2942, immediately. 

Originally mid ene. See note. 
bygone, 3/79, pp. afflicted. See 


bykeringe, 74/2595, sb. skirmish, 
by than, 10/344. See note. 

Camalyon, 29/1008, sb. camel- 
leopard. See note. 

carrikes, 4/118, a kind of large 
ship. See note. 

caste, 12/394, sb. plan, stratagem ; 
60/2091, the throwing; 71/2471, 
missile. See note to 1. 394. 

ceased, 89/3109, pt. s. seized. 

chaffer, 83/2885, sb. merchandise. 
O.E. ceap, faru. 

charke, 51/1778, vb. to creak, 
crack. See note. 

chek, 8/189, sb. a checkered cloth. 

chere, 6/201, sb. demeanour, be- 
haviour, humour. 

chere, 80/2781, sb. friendliness, 

chere, 87/3030, adj. pleased, merry. 

chese, 49/1698, vb. to be free to 
choose. O.E. ceosan. 

clepeth, 24/809, pr. s. calls. 

clipped, 56/1935, pt. pi. embraced, 
hugged. O.E. clyppan. 

clog, 46/1603,. sb. " truncus," 

cloute, 58/2014, sb. blow. 

combrest, 83/2909, pr. s. encum- 
berest. Fr. combrer. 

coost, 50/1721, sb. regard, account. 
See note. 

Cornell, 64/2238, sb. shaft of a 
pinnacle or battlement. O.Fr. 
carnell. See note to 1. 2238, and 
compare Du Cange, s. v. quarn- 
ellus : "pinna inuri per quam 
| milites jaculantur." 

coude, 16/541, pt. s. knew. 

couusail, 46/1590, secret. 

Befouled, 7/233, pp. polluted. Cf. 

O.E. fylan, fulian. 
delte, 16/526, pp. dealt, 
dere, 92/3202, vb. to harm, injure. 

O.E. derian. 

derke, 73/2541, adj. dark, 
dewe, 70/2452, adj. due. 
dight, 79/2763, pp. dressed, pre- 
pared. O.E. dihtan. 
dinge, 26/880, vb. to dash, beat. 

Cf. Icel. dengja, 
dirke, 44/1539. See note. 
dobbet, 33/1136, pp. dubbed. O.E. 

dubban. Fr. dober. 
dome, 14/478, sb. glory, 
don, 88/3078, vb. cause, order 

O.E. don. 

donne, 11/347, adj. dun. 
dowte, 9/297, sb. fear, 
dradde, 36/1232, pt. s. feared. C 

O.E. on-drdan. 



dresse, 49/1702, vb. to direct one's 
self, go, start. Fr. dresser. 

dromonde, 3/63, sb. vessel of war. 

dute, 30/1024, sb. duty. Deriv. of 
due, dewe. Fr. deu. 

Egre, 29/1009, vb. to excite, to 

eke, 20/662, adv. also. O.E. eac. 

engyn, 28/948, sb. a skilful contriv- 
ance. Fr. engin. 

ensample, 27/931, sb. example. 

entente, 16/550, vb. to turn one's 
attention to, to try to get, to 

entente, 28/945, sb. meaning, will, 

erille, 11/368, sb. earl. 

orraunte, 5/139, quick, immedi- 

eye, 80/2793, sb. egg. O.E. seg. 

Fade, 20/678, vb. to dispose, to 

arrange, to set up (?). 
fade, 30/1033, adj. weak, faint, 
faste, 32/1086, adv. much, greatly, 
fat, 90/3152, sib. vat, tub. O.E. 

fauchon, 76/2650, sb. a sword or 


faye, 26/900, vb. truth, faith, 
fele, 47/1619, adj. many 
felle, 29/1004, adj. fierce, furious, 
felte, 41/1405, pt. s. made fall, 


fende, 92/3231, pp. defended, pro- 
tected, granted. 

fere, 36/1248, sb. fear. O.E. fser. 
fere, 44/1505, sb. companion. In 

fere, 31/1071, together, 
fere, 2/59, vb. to terrify, 
ferre, 4/103, adv. far. 
fet, 91/3188, pp. fetched, 
fille, 35/1210, pt. s. fell, 
lleen, 88/3065, to flay. O.E. flan. 
folde, 71/1427, pp. felled, knocked 

forcere, 66/2303, sb. che.t, coffer. 

O.Fr. forcier. 

for-famelid, 66/2282, pp. entirely 

foule, 77/2686, vb. foul luck, mis- 

fowarde, 15/502, 22/732, sb. van- 

frankensense, 20/679, sb. an odor- 
ous resin, pure incense. 

fraye, 15/514, vb. to frighten, at- 

frike, 4/104, adj. quick, bold, 

frith, 2/43, sb. enclosed wood. 

froo, 79/760, prep. from. 

fyne, 9/306, sb. end. 

Game, 90/3141, sb. affair ; 92/3199, 

pleasure. O.E. gamen. 
gan, 16/549, pt. s. began, 
gayylok, 41/1426, sb. a spear or 

javelin. O.E. gafoluc. 
geaunesse, 84/2943 (?), sb. giantess, 
geder, 45/1553, vb. to gather. O.E. 

glased, 35/1208, pt. s. glided. O.Fr. 

glacier. See Zupitza's note to 

Guy, 1. 5067. 
glede, 7/205, sb. a glowing coal, 

ember. O.E. gled. 
god, 3/67, adj. versed in, master 


gome, 5/144, sb. man. O.E. guina. 
gonge, 84/2934, vb. to go. O.E. 

goulis, 6/189, sb. gules, a red 

colour. Fr. geules. 
gray, 83/2887, sb. the fur of a gray, 

or badger. O.E. grseg. 
gree, 82/2850, sb. grace, favour. 

Fr. gre. Lat. gratum. 
grenned, 84/2948, pt. s. grinned, 

roared. O.E. grennian. 
grevaunce, 29/993, sb. grievance, 
greved, 45/1543, pt. s. grieved, 

molested, troubled, 
grith, 82/2850, sb. peace, agree- 
ment. O.E. grifc. 
gryse, 83/2887, sb. a kind of fur. 

Fr. gris. 



guttis, 39/1351, sb. guts. O.E. 

gydoure, 5/163, sb. leader, guide. 

gynne, 67/2326, sb. enginne, con- 

Harde, 59/2056, pt. s. beard. 

hat, 90/3154, vb. to be called. O.E. 

be, 77/2698, pron. nominat. tbay. 

O.E. bi. 
lieede, 62/2158, sb. bead. O.E. 

bende, 73/2536, adj. gentle, polite. 

O.E. bendig. 
bennys, 55/1922, adv. bence. O.E. 

bente, 40/1370, vb. bold, take. 

O.E. bentan. 
bie, 14/455, sb. baste, 
bigbt, 18/613, pt. s. promised; 

36/1242, art called. O.E. bebt. 
bonde of bonde, 12/394, in close 

boole, 32/1119, adj. whole, sound. 

O.E. bal. 
burle, 27/929, vb. to jostle, to 

strike. A contraction of hurtle. 
hurteled, 24/831, pt. pi. clashed 

against, jostled. Frequentative 

of hurt. Fr. burter, beurter. 
bye, 32/1092, sb. baste. 

I-fast, 58/2000, fixed. 

ilkadele, 58/2016, every part. O.E. 

&lc, d&l. 

ilke, 9/281, adj. same. O.E. ylca. 
inowe, 25/854, adv. enougb. O.E. 

isbente, 66/2286, pp. destroyed. 
O.E. ge-scended. 

istoke, 56/1963, pp. sbut up, fast- 
ened. From steken. O.L.G. 

istonge, 16/533, pp. stung, pierced. 
O.E. stungen. 

it, 25/845, vb. to bit. Icel. bitta. 

iwis, 3/71, adv. certainly, indeed. 
O.E. gewiss. 

iwone, 11/358, adj. accustomed. 

Japed, 75/2617, pp. mocked, 
laughed at. O.Icel. gabba. 

jouste, 57/1991, vb. to joust, fight. 
Fr. j ouster. 

Kele, 93/3258, vb. to keel, cool. 

O.E. celan. 

kind, 63/2196, sb. race, family, 
kithe, 28/971, vb. to show, manifest. 

O.E. cy$an. 

kon, 66/2297, prs. pi. can. 
kynde, 28/968, sb. nature, temper, 
kynde, 2/42, adj. natural, inborn. 

Lan, 15/516, pt. s. ceased, stopped. 

O.E. Ian. 
late, 71/2460, pt. pi. let, caused, 

ordered. O.E. let, l&ton. 
launde, 2/59, sb. park, lawn, 
laye, 77/2694, sb. lea, field. O.E. 

leak Of. Water- Zoo. 
laye, 28/951, sb. law. O.E. lagu. 
layne, 16/538, pt. pi. lay. O.E. 

lefe, 23/763, vb. leave, abandon, 

forsake. O.E. lfau. 
lefe-long, 24/832, adj. long, tedious, 
legee^, 23/775, leagues. Fr. lieue. 

O.Fr. legue. Lat. leuca. 
leke, 50/1726, sb. leek. O.E. Mac. 
lele, 33/1129, adj. leal, loyal. Fr. 


longer, 72/2500, compar. longer, 
lere, 66/2289, sb. countenance, 

complexion. O.E. hleor. 
lere, 74/2569, vb. to teach, 
lered, 58/2005, pp. learned, 
lerne, 33/1141, vb. to teach, 
lese, 49/1683, vb. to loose. O.E. 

lette, 17/585, vb. leave off; 74/2610, 

to put a stop to, hinder, tarry. 

O.E. lettan. 
leve, 23/794, vb. leave. O.E. 

l&fan; 30/1045, omit, neglect, 
leve, 19/651, vb. live, remain. 

O.E. gelyfan. 
leven, 31/1050, vb. believe. O.E. 




lowdo, 75/2601, si. laymen, un- 

learned. O.E. lie wed. 
light, 26/905, adj. active, nimble. 
light, 33/1125, pp. alighted. O.E. 

lithe, 81/1778, sb. limb, member. 

O.E. li*. 

logges, 69/2399, sb. huts. Fr. loge. 
longith, 28/951, prs. s. belongeth, 

loute, 72/2513, vb. to stoop, bow 

down. O.E. lutan. 
lowly, 70/2454, adv. low, not loud. 
lurdeynes, 76/2651, sb. lurdan, 

lout. Fr. lourdin. 
lym, 59/2045, sb. limb. 
lyued, 66/1261, pt. pi. lived. 

Magre, 42/1442, prep, in spite of. 
maistryes, 89/3117, sb. pi. mastery, 

proof of skill, combat. 
manly, 29/989, adj. brave. 
mayne, 16/528, sb. main, strength. 
me, 9/287, sb. men, people, one. 
meche, 6/179, adj. much. O.E. 

mede, 31/1054, sb. meadow. O.E. 

mede, 37/1289. sb. meed, pay. 

O.E. med. 
medel, 73/2540, vb. meddle. O.Fr. 

mesler, mestler. 

men, 4/115, sb. men, people, one. 
menske, 28/972, sb. manliness, 

honour. O.E. mennisc. 
mente, 51/1784, vb. to aim at, to 

intend to go. O.E. myntan. 

See note to 1. 1604. 
mervaylyth, 88/3066, prs. s. mar- 

vels, wonders. Of. Fr. mer- 


mete, 47/1633, sb. food, repast. 
meyne, 7/219, sb. host, company, 

retinue. O.Fr. maisniee. 
mikille, 30/1016, adj. many. O.E. 


moche, 15/505, adj. much. 
mode, 29/1009, sb. mind, temper, 

courage. O E. mod. 

mooldo, 5/136, sb. earth, worth. 
O.E. molde. 

moone, 28/944, sb. moan, com- 
plaint. Of. O.E. majriaii. 

more, 23/777, delay. See note to 1. 

more, 29/1005, sb. moor, Maurian. 

mot, 19/650, vb. may. 

myghty, 56/1927, adj. See the 

myrke, 45/1541, adj. dark. O.E. 

Natheless, 15/506, adv. neverthe- 

nather, 36/1232, adj. nother. 

ner, 13/416, conj. nor. 

nere, 22/756, adv. near. 

nerehond, 86/2998, adv. almost. 

noght, 43/1497, adv. not. 

noght, 78/2712, sb. nothing. 

none, 32/1114, sb. noon. 

nones, 3/74, sb. nonce, occasion. 

nothinge, 6/175, not at all. 

nothir, 8/267, conj. neither. 

nought for than, 43/1483, never- 

nyl, 17/585, prs. s. will not. O.E. 

Of, 32/1088, prp. on account of. 

oght, 78/2713, sb. aught. 

onarmede, 14/464, unarmed. 

onnej^e, 89/3105, adv. scarcely. 

onworthily, 49/1634, adv. unuso- 

orders, 59/2036. See the note. 

ore, 72/2512, sb. mercy, favour. 
O.E. ar. 

orfrays, 83/2888, sb. gold embroid- 
ery. Lat. Aurifrisum. 

overlede, 72/2502, vb. to domineer 
over, to oppress. 

Parelles, 55/1917, sb. pi. perils. 

Fr. p&ril. 

paynym, 16/539, sb. pagan, 
pellure, 83/2887, sb. fur. O.Fr. 




pight, 34/1158, pp. pitched, fixed, 
pinne, 88/3077, vb. to torment. 

O.E. pinan. 

playn, 6/177, vb. to complain, 
plete, 33/1151, vb. plead, prattle. 

Prom Fr. plot, plaid, 
plight, 26/889, prs. s. promise, 

poleyne, 6/176, sb. pulty-pieces, 


praye, 16/550, sb. press, crowd, 
prees, 40/1399, sb. crowd, struggle. 

Fr. presse. 
preest, 34/1169, adj. ready. Fr. 

prik, 81/2831, vb. to spur a horse, 

to ride, 
prikke, 65/2260, sb. a piece of wood 

in the centre of the target. See 

Halli well's Diction, s. v. preke. 
prove, 6/183, vb. to try. 
prowe, 51/1766, sb. profit, advan- 
tage, honour. Fr. prou. 
pryinsauns, 28/965 (?). See the 


Quod, 32/1095, prt. a. quoth. 

qwelle, 75/2614, vb. to kill. O.E. 

qwere, 17/566, sb. quire, choir- 

qweynte, 3/74, adj. excellent, ele- 
gant. O.Fr. coint. Lat. cogni- 

qwike, 58/2001, adj. alive, burning. 
O.E. cwic. 

qwite, 16/520, vb. to requite, to 

Racches, 2/56, sb. setting dogs, 

rafe, 25/866, vb. to rave. O.Fr. 

raver. Span, rabiar. Lat. ra- 

ras, 39/1349, sb. instant, occasion. 

See the note. 19/645, hurry, 

rase, 23/774, sb. rush, channel of 

the sea. 

raught, 46/1605, prt. s. reached, 
aimed at, struck. O.E. r&hte. 

rede, 85/2980, sb. counsel, advice. 
O.E. r&d. 

rees, 49/1693, sb. time, occasion. 

rehete, 59/2035, vb. to cheer. 

rekyneth, 57/1982, prs. s. reckons, 

releve, 7/219, vb. to rally. 

renew, 33/1126, vb. to tie. Fr. 

renew, 63/2200, vb. to renovate, to 
recommence. Renew. 

resyn, 16/534, prs. pi. rise. 

rew, 89/3105, sb. row, order. O.E. 

roght, 54/1878, /rt. ^.recked, cared. 
O.E. rohton. 

roial, 20/686, 51/1765, adj. exqui- 
site, distinguished ; 71/2483, de- 
lightful. Of. 1. 2247. 

rome, 14/484, vb. to walk about. 
See Stratmann, s. v. ramen, p. 

romine, 26/876, sb. room, space. 
O.E. rum. 

rowte, 2/54, sb. company, host. 

rowte, 60/2073, vb. to assemble in 
a company, to throng, to rally. 

ruly, 47/1624, adj. rueful. O.E. 

ryme, 10/339, vb. to cry out, to 

Saile, 12/385, vb. to assail. 

same, all in s., 56/1938, alto- 

sare, 21/706, adv. sorely, sadly. 

saule, 66/2310. See the note. 

saute, 18/619, sb. assault. 

saye, 58/1998, pt. pi. saw. O.E. 

scole, 33/1141, vb. style, manner. 

sede, 7/235, sb. seed. 

seke, 32/1116, adj. sick. 

semely, 2/39, adj. seemly, comely, 

sendelle, 4/129, sb. a kind of rich 
thin silk. 



set, 49/1717, vb. to consider, esti- 

sete, 3/62, sb. a seat. 

sewes, 76/2654, sb. juices, delica- 
cies. O.E. seaw. 

seyne, 14/472, vb. to speak. 

shente, 1/23, pp. destroyed. 

shifte, 78/2704, vb. to divide, to 
share. O.E. sciftan. 

shonde, 64/2222, sb. disgrace, igno- 
miny. O.E. sceand. 

shoon, 40/1381, sb. shoes. O.E. 
sceon, sceos. 

shope him, 2/50, pt. s. got himself 
ready to, arrayed himself. 

shoure, 15/509, sb. fight. 

shrew, 72/2518, vb. to curse. 

shrewes, 76/2652, sb. wicked 

sikerlye, 62/2172, adv. surely. 

sith, 47/1632, conj. since. 

sithe, 47/1619, sb. pi. times. O.E. 

skaped, 59/2043, pt. s. escaped. 

skath, 47/1645, sb. loss, damage, 
ruin. Cf. O.E. sceafcan. 

skomfited, 38/1320, pp. discomfited. 
O.Fr. desconfire. 

skulkyng, 76/2651, prs. p. lurking, 
breaking forth from a hiding 

sinerte, 38/1309, adj. smart, pun- 

smertly, 41/1419, adv. smartly, at 

socoure, 15/507, sb. succour, assist- 

soghten, 40/1372, pt. pi. moved on ; 
rode. See the note. 

solas, 20/675, sb. relief, recreation, 
pleasure. O.Fr. solaz. Lat. 

somer, 77/2702, sb. a sumpter 
horse. Fr. sommier. Cf. Diez, 
Etym. Diet. I., p. 364, s. v. sal- 

sonde, 61/2134, sb. message, order. 

sore, 2/47, adv. very much, eagerly. 

sore, 33/1138, adv. sadly. 

sowdeoures, 21/727, sb. soldiers, 
hirelings. Lat. solidarius. Cf. 
Fr. soudard, soudoye. 

spede, 70/2433, vb. thrive. 

spille, 36/1226, vb. to destroy. 
O.E. spillan. 

stenyed, 24/825, pt. s. shook, as- 

steven, 65/2258, sb. voice. O.E. 

stondart, 78/2717, sb. standard- 
bearer. Fr. etendard. 

store, 23/768, sb. provision. 

store, 92/3210, sb. stock, preserva- 
tion, keeping. 

stoure, 7/212, sb. battle, tumult. 

stoute, 53/1825, adj. proud, boast- 

stronde, 2/53, sb. strand, shore. 

stroyeth, 5/159, prs. s. destroyeth. 

stynte, 52/1804, pt. pi. stopped. 

sue, 46/1601, vb. to follow. Fr. 

sware, 13/428, adj. heavy. 

swyth, 47/1621, adv. quick, fast. 
O.E. switSe. 

Tan, 74/2581, pp. taken. 

tene, 30/1032, sb. grief, anger, in- 
sult, injury. O.E. teona. 

tene, 83/2902, vb. to vex, to wax 
wroth. O.E. tynan. 

teyde, 48/1648, pp. tied. 

tha, 76/2639. See the note. 

thane, 51/1756, than that. 

then, 46/1593, vb. to prosper. 
O.E. peon. 

thikke, 30/1027, adj. numerous, 
plentiful, plenty. 

threste, 34/1170, vb. to thrust, 
shake, totter. 

thrifte, 78/2706, sb. thriving, pros- 
perity, success. O.Icel. prift. 

tho, 59/2052, pron. those, them. 

tho, 59/2063, art. the, those. 

tho, 2/53, adv. then. O.E. *a. 

thronge, 41/1401, sb. thrusts, 
throwing of arrows. 



tobrasto, 34/1108, burst, or 

broke in pieces. O.E. (tobaerst) 

tohewe, 89/3103, pp. hewn to 

pieces. O.E. to-heawen. 
tokenyng, 8/242, sb. news, intelli- 
totreden, 40/1382, pp. crushed, 

trodden down, 
trappe, 52/1802, vb. to go. Of. Ger. 

trippeln, E. trip, O.Fr. treper. 
tredde, 58/1999, sb. thread. O.E. 


trende, 27/940, pp. turned, vaulted, 
troted, 55/1923, pt. pi. treated, 

pressed. FT. traiter. 
trewe, 3/67, adj. a thorough master 

of, a trustworthy interpreter of. 
treyumple, 27/913 (?) 
trowe, 8/246, vb. to believe, 
trusse, 49/1707, vb. to pack off, to 

be off. 

trwes, 31/1060, sb. truce, 
tyte, 6/181, adj. soon, quickly, 


Uimeth, 5/160, adv. scarcely. 

Vere, 28/965, sb. spring, 
vertue, 66/2312, sb. magic, power, 
viage, 82/2846, sb. voyage, journey, 
victory, 92/3227, sb. booty, 
voydance, 32/1106, sb. relinquish- 

rnent, deliverance, 
voyde, 51/1768, vb. to give up, 

abandon, leave. 

Wage, 18/590, vb. to hire, pay. 

ware, 7/204, adj. aware. 

waste, 8/246, in = in vain. 

wende, 92/3214, vb. to turn, go. 
O.E. wendau. 

wende, 85/2958, pt. s. thought, 
O.E. wende. 

wene, 31/1061, vb. to think. 

were, 7/210, vb. to defend, to pro- 
tect, to fight. O.E. werian. 

werre, 16/541, sb. war. 

wory, 3/60, adj. weary, fatigued, 
wessh, 54/1871, pt. pi. washed, 
wete, 94/3270, vb. to know, 
what, 47/1623, pron. = who. 
wine, 76/2650, sb. a kind of axe. 

O.E. wifel, " bipennis." 
wight, 27/933, adj. nimble, active. 

Sw. vig, active, 
wirch, 5/148, vb. to 'work, to do. 

O.E. wyrcan. 

wiste, 48/1662, pt. s. knew, 
wode, 9/276, adj. mad, furious, 
wode- wroth, 90/3130, adj. madly 

angry. O.E. wod and wrafc. 
wone, 60/2093, sb. lot, quantity. 

Icel. wan. 
worche, 59/2046, vb. to work, to 

do. O.E. wyrcan. 
worthed up, 34/1163, pt. s. got up, 

wote, 2/36, prs. s. know. O.E. 

wotist, 61/2123, prs. s. knowest. 

O.E. wast, 
wrake, 70/2446, sb. persecution, 

mischief, destruction. O.E. 


wreke, 88/3058, pp. wreaked, re- 
wrong, 73/2557, pt. s. pressed, 

forced his way, hurried off. O.E. 

wyne, 9/275, vb. get, attain. O.E. 


Yare, 19/639, adj. ready. O.E. 

yates, 66/2285, sb. gates. O.E. 

yede, 66/2311, pt. s. went. O.E. 

yolde, 12/403, vb. yield. O.E. 

gieldan, pp. golden 
yolowe, 29/1005, adj. yellow. O.E. 


pilke, 76/2644, pron. such, yon. 

O.E. bylc. 
fpon, 4/108, art. the. O.E. J>one. 



AGREMARE, Agremour or Egre- 
mour, a town in Spain situated 
on the rivor Flagot. The soudan 
is holding his court there (1. 33), 
when he hears of the injuries 
done to his subjects by the 
Eomans. Having destroyed 
Eome, he returns to Agremor 
(1. 672) [not to Morimonde, as 
in the Destruction, 1. 1351, and 
in Fierabras, 1. 27]. At Agremor 
the twelve peers are imprisoned 
and besieged. Syr Ferumbras 
reads Fyremoygne, Egremoun, 

ALAGOLOFUR, a Saracen giant, 
warden of the bridge of Man- 
trible ; 11. 2135, 2881, 2149, 2175, 
2801, 3053. In Syr Ferumbras, 
1. 3831, etc., he is called Agola- 
fre. In the French poem of 
Fierabras we find Agolafre and 

ALCARON, 1. 2762, a Saracen deity ; 
cl note to 1. 2271. 

ALEROYSE, 1. 1699, one of the 
twelve peers ; cf. note to 1. 884. 

ALISAUNDRE. Ferumbras is called 
King of Alisaundre, 11. 510, 984. 
Cf. Destr. 71, 1237, 1315. Fiera- 
bras, 50, 66, 538, etc. Ashmole 
Ferumbras, 53, 88, etc. 

APPOLYN, one of the Mahometan 
deities. See note to 1. 86. 

ARABYE, 1. 3097. Cf. Destr. 75 ; 
Fierabras, 3160, 4096. 

ASCALON. Laban's birthplace, 1. 
100, and subject to him. This 
name does not occur in any 
other version. 

ASCAROT, 1. 2762, a Mahometan 
god. Occurring in none of the 
other versions. 

ASCOPARS, see note to 1. 495. 

ASKALOUS, 1. 497. 

ASSAYNES, 1. 497. 

AssiENS, 11. 1039, 2085. In this 
poem only the last three nations 
are mentioned as being included 
among Laban's subjects. 

ASSYE, 1. 102, 123,' 1000. See 
note to 1. 1000. 

giant who kills Sabaris, 11. 346, 
352. He is slain by the portcullis 
let down by the Eomans, 1. 432. 
He was husband to Barrock, the 
giantess of the bridge of Man- 
trible, 11. 3944, 4902. Cf. Destr. 
1090. Not in Fierabras nor in 
the Ashmolean version. See 
note to 1. 346. 

AUFRIKE, 11. 102, 114. Aufri- 
canes, 1. 257, part of the soudan's 
dominions. Cf. Syr Fer umbras , 
1. 5465, Destr. 76, Fierabras, 

BABILON, see note to 1. 69 ; cf. 
Destr. 78, 204, 85; Fierabras, 51; 
Syr Fer. 53. 

BALDESEYNES, 501, 871. Occur- 
ring in no other version; cf. 
besides Martin's note to Kudrun, 
161, 2, and perhaps Fierabras, 
2873, 4721 Balegue = Balaguer 
(Ballegarium, Valaguaria) near 
Lerida in Spain. 

BARBARYE, 1. 1001, mentioned 
only in this poem. 

BARROK, 11. 2939, 2950, 3022, a 
giantess, wife to Astragot, slain 
by Charles. See note to 1. 2939. 

BELMORE, does not occur in the 
other versions; see note to 1. 

BELSABUB, 1. 357, occurs only in 
this poem. 

1715, one of the twelve knights. 
See Introduction, p. xxvii. 

BOLOYNE, 3238. Charles presents 



the nails to that place. See note 

to 1. 3236, and cf. Ficrabras, 1. 

BRETOMAYN, Laban's gaoler at 

Agremor, 11. 1533, 1591, slain by 

Floripas, 1. 1606. This name is 

spelt 'Brutamont' in Fierulmis, 

f Brytamoun ' in Syr Fer umbras. 

It is not to be met with in the 

BROULAND, chief counsellor to 

Laban. See note on 1. 1743. 

tez; see note to 1. 1723. 
BRYER OF POYLE, a Roman knight, 

slain by Ferurabras ; see note to 

1. 514. 
BULGARE, 1. 1002. Occurring in 

no other poem. 

CASSAUNDRE, 11. 986, 512, town 
belonging to Lukafer. This 
name is not found in the other 

CHARLES, Charlemayne, the French 

CirAUNDER, 1. 123, a town in Asia; 
only mentioned here. See note 
to 1. 1000. 

COSDROYE escorts a convoy des- 
tined for the soudan ; he is slain 
by Eoland ; cf. note to 1. 2695. 

CRAMADAS, a Saracen bishop, 11. 
2775, 2788. Not found in the 
other versions. 

CURRAUNTES, the bridge near 
Mantrible, 1. 2866. This name 
occurs only in this poem. 

DASABERBE, 1. 1707, (?) mentioned 

only here. 
DENYS, 11. 27, 61, etc. Occurring 

in all versions. 
DURNEDALE, Eoland's sword; see 

note to 1. 875. 

ESPIARD, 1. Ill, Laban's messen- 
ger ; cf. note to 1. 2145. 

ETHIOPES, subject to Laban. See 
note to 1. 257. 

EUROPE. 1. 1002. Mentioned only 
in this poem. 

FERUMBRAS, see note to 1. 93. 

FLAGOT, the river on which the 
city of Mantrible with its famous 
bridge is situated, cf. 11. 2559, 
2798, 2855, etc., and Fierabrc.s, 
11. 7348, 4886, etc. When the 
twelve peers besieged in Agre- 
mar send Richard of Normandy 
to Charlemagne to ask his aid, 
Richard is said to have started 
in the direction of Mantrible, 
1. 2559 ; but finding the bridge 
blocked up and guarded, 1. 2799, 
he is obliged to swim across the 
water, ' Flagot the flode,' 1. 2804. 
Charlemagne being informed of 
the distress of his peers, starts 
towards Mantrible, 1. 2849, and 
having first taken it and left 
Richard there with two hundred 
knights, 1. 3044, he continues his 
inarch against the soudan at 
Agremar, 1. 3047. Whence it is 
clear that Agremar cannot be 
situated on the river Flagot, as 
is stated in 1. 34 ; a mistake 
evidently owing to an oversight 
on the part of the poet. Cf. 
besides, note to 1. 1723. 

FLOREYN OF ROME, name given 
to Ferumbras after his baptism ; 
see note to 1. 1486. 

FLORIP, Florypas; see note to 1. 
614. In the Ashmoleaii ver- 
sions we find Floryppe, a spelling 
which does not occur in any of 
the French poems. But once 
we find Floripes in Fierabros, 1. 

FOCARD, 1. 2900, one of the Chris 
tian knights who struck at the 
bridge-keeper of Mantrible when 
he refused to let them pass. The 
name occurs only in this poem. 

FOLK BALIANT, 1. 1695, one of the 
twelve peers. Only found in 
this poem. 

FORTIBRAUNCE, 1. 422, one of the 
soudan's engineers. Only oc- 
curring in this poem. 

FRATJNCE. Charles is called king 
of dowse Fraunce, cf. Fierabras, 
2103; Syr Ferumbms,r2G9 : This 
phrase does not occur in the 



FREMOUNDE, a saint; see note to 
1. 2845. 

FIUGE, 1. 1000; Frigys, 1. 1040. 
Part of the soudan's dominions, 
not mentioned in the other ver- 

GALLOPES, 1. 251, mentioned only 
in this poem. 

GrA3E, a town in Spain, where 
Charlemagne lands his troops. 
The name is found only in this 
poem (in rhyme), 1. 772. 

GENELYN, a French knight, noto- 
rious for his treachery. He 
advised Charles to leave Spain 
and to return home, urging that 
the twelve peers must be dead at 
Agremor, since no news arrived 
from them, 1. 2820. When in 
assaulting Mantrible he saw 
Charles shut in in the city, he 
treacherously proclaimed the 
king to be dead, and ordered the 
French to return to France, 
where he hoped to be crowned 
king. But he was rebuked by 
Ferumbras (11. 2970-2991). For 
his treason he is hanged and 
drawn at Montfaucon in Paris 
(11. 3244-3254). 

GENERYSE, 11. 1139, 1239, is the 
name Oliver gives himself when 
asked by Ferumbras. The 
French Fierabras and the Ash- 
mole Ferumbras have Garin in- 

GY OF BOURGOYNE, see note to 11. 
1888, 1892. 

GYNDARD, 1. 543, a Eoman senator 
who kills ten Saracens. He is 
slain by Lukafer. Occurring 
only in this poem. 

HUBERT, 1. 518, a Eoman knight, 
slain by Ferumbras. Not men- 
tioned in the other versions. 

IFFREZ, a Eoman senator who 
advises to send to Charles for 
help. See note to 1. 165. 

INDE, 1. 999. Not mentioned in 
the other poems. Cf. note to 1. 

ISRES, 625, 641, the chief porter of 
Eome, who treacherously de- 
livers tho keys to the Saracens. 
See note to 1. 625. 

JUBYTER, 11. 2254, 2762, a Saracen 
god, mentioned only in this 

LABAN, see note to 1. 29. 

LOWES, occurring in the Sowdati 
a,ud. the Destruction, but not men- 
tioned in the other versions. See 
note to 1. 24. 

LUKAFER OF BALDAS, see note to 
1. 113. Once, 1. 236, this name 
is spelt Lukefere. 

MACEDOYNE, 1. 1002. Occurring 
only in this poem. 

MAHOUND, see note to 1. 86. 

MAPYN, 1. 2326, introduces him- 
self into the bed-chamber of 
Floripas to steal the fatal girdle. 
In the French poem, 1. 3046, he 
is called Maubrun d' Agreinolee ; 
in the Ashmolean version Mau- 
byn of Egremolee, 1. 2385. Cf. 
Introduction, pp. xx, xxx, xxxi. 

MARAGONDE, the name of Flori- 
pas's governess, 1. 1563. Spelt 
Morabunde in the French 
poem. See Introduction, pp. 
xxx, xxxi. 

MARIE, 11. 917, 2390 ; cf. Destr. 11. 
374, 564 ; Fierabras, 11. 285, 815 ; 
Syr Ferumbras, 11. 5177, 5451. 

MARSEDAG, king of Barbarye, oc- 
curs only in this poem. See note 
to 1. 2247. 

MAUNTRIBLE, a town in Spain on 
the river Flagot (see above) with 
a bridge ; cf. also Destr. 211, and 
Fierabras, 1867, etc. 

MAVON, 11. 278, 422, 2230, Laban's 
engineer; spelt Mabon in the 
Destr. 11. 908, 941, and in Fiera- 
bras, 1. 3735. The name does 
not occur in the Ashrnolo MS. 

MIRON OF BRABANE, one of the 
twelve peers, occurring only in 
this poem, 1. 1703. 

MONTFAWCON, 1. 3253. Not found 
in the other versions. 



MOUNPELERS, after having con- 
quered the soudan, Charlemagne 
sails from Spain to Mounpeler, 
1. 3228. The name does not 
occur in the Fierabras, where 
the king returns to France in an 
eight days' journey (11. 6164 
6187). Cf. Destr. 11. 250, 286. 

MOWNJOYE, see note to 1. 868, and 
cf. the Song of Roland, 128/746. 

NEYMES or BAVERE, one of the 
twelve peers, see note to 1. 836. 

NUBENS, 1. 873, NUBYE, 1. 1001, a 
people subject to the soudan. 

OGER DANOYS, one of the twelve 
peers, see note to 1. 836. 

OLIBORN, 1. 99, the soudan's chan- 
cellor ; only found in this poem. 

OLYVER, one of the twelve peers ; 
see note to 1. 1250. 

PARIS, 1. 917 ; see note to 1. 3254. 
PERSAGYN, a king of Italy, and 

uncle to Ferumbras, slain by 

Oliver, L 1259. In the Destr. \. 

162, we find one Parsagon men- 
tioned among: the peers of the 

soudan's empire. See note to 1. 

PERSE, 1. 2888, cf. Destr. 11. 77, 

421. Fierabras, 1640, 1713. 
SEINT PETER, 11. 161, 480, etc., 

the saint ; cf. Fierabras, 1. 1261 ; 

Syr Ferumbras, 1. 3756 ; Destr. 1. 

CEINT PETER, 1. 453, the cathedral ; 

cf. Fierabras, 1. 57; Destr. 1. 

SEINT POUL, 11. 163, 3269, the 

saint; cf. Syr Ferumbras, 1. 

3756 ; not mentioned in the other 

POYLE, 1. 514, ? Apulia; found 

only in this poem ; cf. note to 1. 


QWYNTYN, 1. 1298, a saint by whom 
Ferumbras swears ; see note to 
1. 2845. 


to 11. 2535, 2795, 3044. 
EOMAYNE, 1. 77, inhabitant of 

EOME, 1. 17. 
KOULAND, see note to 11. 1499, 


SATIIANAS, 1. 2777, a Saracen god. 

SAVARIS, 1. 171, a duke of Rome 
who leads the Eoman troops 
against the Saracens. He is 
slain by Estragot (1. 346). He 
also occurs in the Destr. de Home. 
In the French Fierabras appears 
a French knight Savaris, 1. 

SORTYBRAUNCE, the chief coun- 
cillor of the soudan. 

SPAYN, 1. 717, belonging to the 
soudan's dominions. It is the 
scene of the principal action 
narrated in this poem, as indeed 
the only part where the scene is 
laid elsewhere is that describing 
the destruction of Borne. 

SYMON, a saint by whom Charles 
swears, 1. 1713. 

TAMPER, a name peculiar to this 
poem. He erects a gallows be- 
fore Agremore castle to hang 
Guy, 1. 2641. 

TERMAGANT, 1. 137, a Saracen 
deity; cf. note to 1. 86. Spelt 
Ternagant in Syr Ferumbras, 
Tervagant in the French Fiera- 

TERY LARDENEYS, one of the 
twelve peers; see note to 1. 1691. 

TURKES, 1. 874, cf. Fierabras, 128, 
1641, 3767. Syr Ferumbras, 5433, 

TURPYN, the French bishop who 
baptizes Ferumbras, 1. 1475. 
This name does not occur in the 
Ashmole MS. 

VENYS, subject to Laban ; see note 
to 1. 1000. Mentioned only in 
this poem.